The 4th of July is just days away. Here are a few suggestions of how to have a fun holiday with your senior loved one.
Many seniors still enjoy traditional celebrations like going to a relative or friend’s house for a lively barbecue. Others love to see live fireworks in the evening. Just be mindful that a full day of sun and grilling out, followed by an evening of fireworks may be too much activity for one day. If a mid-day break/nap from all the activity isn’t feasible then you’re better off choosing to have them join for either the first or second half of the day.
Tips to make outdoor activities senior-friendly:
- Limit direct sun exposure by seating them in a cool and shady spot. Many medications that seniors take make them sensitive to even small amounts of sun. Some medicines that can cause skin sensitivity to the sun include Amiodarone, used to treat heart conditions, and over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), like ibuprofen.
- Bring a light jacket or blanket to keep them warm at night.
- Standing is tiring. Make sure they always have a comfortable seat that supports their back. Bring a cushion, portable chair, or wheelchair if needed.
- Bring their favorite beverages and frequently encourage them to drink so they’ll stay hydrated.
- Take regular bathroom breaks to reduce or eliminate the chance of an accident.
- For seniors with Alzheimer’s or dementia, limit the time spent at large gatherings to reduce the chance they’ll get agitated, anxious, or angry.
Fun ways to celebrate indoors:
- Play simple card games or classic board games.
- Involve your older adult in cooking and food preparation as much as they’re able and willing. It’s another way to feel like they’re contributing and are included in the group. Make traditional foods like hot dogs, hamburgers, potato salad, and coleslaw. Prepare a simple patriotic dessert or organize an ice cream social. You could even make it a sundae bar by including a variety of toppings.
- Get crafty. Pinterest has endless ideas that would be fun for both kids and seniors to do together in the comfort of A/C.
Patriotic celebrations are a great way for family and friends to relax, bond and build lasting memories together. With a little planning and preparation, caregivers and loved ones can make sure seniors are able to partake in the festivities and enjoy the spirit of the day.
For a list of Fireworks displays across Colorado check out the list that 9News put together
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