Many hardships can sometimes be associated with growing old, and those hardships can become especially difficult during the holiday season. Seniors need love and support, and a special need exists for senior companionship during the holiday season.
Why Holidays Are Hard on Many Seniors
The year-end holidays are usually associated with being joyous and festive, but older adults can easily be left out of that cheer. For some, the season becomes a time of sadness and isolation – particularly if loved ones and family members are either far away or fail to notice that depressed state. If you think an elderly loved one is acting strange or withdrawn, they may be in need of senior companionship.
Numerous reasons exist for this occurrence:
- Too many memories. For someone who has lived for a long time, the holidays bring reminders of everyone they have lost along the way. Even for the happiest of seniors, this can make the holiday season a very bittersweet time.
- Living apart from friends and loved ones. Many seniors in nursing homes may feel disconnected from true friends and family, making the holidays feel lonely even if they are living among other seniors. Visit if you are able, and try to arrange for additional calls. Sending cards is another way to stay in touch and make them feel included.
- Living alone. Over 1/4 of American seniors live alone, and missing out on social interaction during the holidays can make anyone feel down.
- Mobility issues. Some seniors want to be able to engage in holiday cheer but are prevented due to mobility problems or other physical health impairments. They may be physically incapable of joining in.
- Financial burdens. When a senior is living on a fixed income, sometimes their financial state affects whether they can participate fully in the holidays. When they are unable to participate, their disappointment can add to the pain of old memories if they remember hosting parties or buying gifts they can no longer afford.
The families we serve keep saying great things.
I just wanted to tell you how grateful we are that Neighborly Home Care stepped in & took over taking care of my Dad when we really needed it, no questions asked. Our caregiver has become part of the family and we know we can depend on her being there every day & taking great care of my Dad. He misses her when she’s not there!
— Daughter of an NHC Client
In addition, clinical depression is a major problem among older people, with an estimated 7 million retirees suffering from the disorder. The problem can be worse during holiday seasons. For some of those elderly people, senior companionship could ease the loneliness.
Give Love and Attention to The Seniors in Your Life
The solution to these problems can be straightforward: be aware of the emotional state of any seniors in your life and do your best to make them part of your holiday festivities. Bring them to events, even if special transport is required. In the event they are unable to travel, consider hosting a holiday get-together at their place so they can enjoy festivities in the comfort of their own homes. Show them love and attention, so the risk of loneliness is lower.
You could also try volunteering to help the elderly in your community. You could donate presents, food, or your time by visiting with older people who have no one else to talk to. Just contact a nearby nursing home or food bank and they will undoubtedly have suggestions for how you can help.
Neighborly Home Care Provides Senior Care Solutions
Whether you are wondering how to provide senior companionship to your loved one for the holidays or you have an older loved one for whom care is becoming difficult, we can help. We specialize in senior in-home care, allowing your senior loved ones to live as independently as possible, while making daily living easier. We create an individualized care plan to meet their needs and our care services make their quality of life the best it can be. Contact us today to learn more.