A Visit Can Brighten the Day

Is social engagement important for elders as they age? On the surface, this appears to be a simple question to answer. Generally, most people prefer some companionship or occasional company. Even when self-sufficient, most enjoy another face and voice to see and hear.

My parents showcase two different personalities on this issue. Both mother and father are in their 80’s, with a variety of age related ailments, and are homebound. My father sticks to a pretty consistent daily routine on getting up and dressed; taking his medications and meals; reading newspapers and/or books while alternating with TV; and heading to bed early evening after dinner. He is rather quiet, and does not seem insistent on socializing. His routine does not seem to change much with or without visitors or company.

My mother, however, is not like my father. She appears to be much more stimulated by people, conversation, and companionship. She has always been socially active in various community groups, and enjoys being with people. When muddling through her current days, she follows a much more loose fitting routine than my father. She may sleep until mid-morning. Have lite meals for both breakfast and lunch, and not get dressed until late afternoon. Much of her day is napping on the couch, or looking out the front windows to watch neighborhood activities. However, when friends or family appear, she is much more engaged. She may sit and chat all afternoon, enjoying the company of others.

When family and friends stay involved, it can bring much happiness to seniors. Scheduled visits are greatly appreciated. A stopover for weekly lunch or dinner can be an enjoyable social occasion. Even a simple phone call can open many thoughts and opinions from seniors. They just need someone to listen.

Supplementing family socialization efforts can be accomplished through the services of Home Care Partners. We provide caring staff who keep seniors – and aging parents –  safe and secure at home, while maintaining their independence.

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