Warm summer days beckon everyone to come outside and enjoy themselves, and a picnic is an idea way for your elderly loved one and family members to spend an afternoon. Picnics at the local park are especially welcome for seniors that are spending a lot of time indoors due to limited mobility issues. Family caregivers like you won’t have to work very hard to plan the perfect picnic for an aging family member.
Why a Picnic?
There’s something special about enjoying a meal outside during the summer months. It evokes past celebrations and family activities, and gives everyone involved a change of scenery. Seniors will benefit from short exposure to the sun, which helps the body to create Vitamin D. Fresh air is also something that the elderly will enjoy, especially if they are frequently homebound and run the air conditioner a lot.
Picnics can help your elderly loved one alleviate boredom and isolation, because they are stimulated mentally and emotionally with the fun of an outing. Whether they are watching children play on the playground, observing dogs and their owners or simply people-watching, elderly loved ones are sure to enjoy being around others in the community. If other family members are present, it’s also an excellent time to visit comfortably in a spacious setting.
Picnic Tips for Seniors
There are a few important things that family caregivers like you need to keep in mind when planning a picnic for an aging loved one. First, make sure they will have comfortable seating. Most seniors are definitely not spry enough to sit on the ground or on a hard picnic table bench. A patio chair or folding camp chair can provide them with comfort and stability. Shade is another important thing to consider when planning a picnic for a senior. While everyone should limit their sun exposure, seniors are especially susceptible to sunburn and should always be in the shade with sunscreen and a large-brimmed hat to protect them.
There are a few other things to think about when planning the perfect picnic, such as what kind of food you will bring. Some foods can spoil quickly in warm weather, particularly anything with mayonnaise on or in it. Keep perishable food properly stored in a cooler when not being served to avoid food poisoning. Food poisoning can hit the elderly especially hard, because their bodies are often not as robust when it comes to fighting off illness. Make sure that the food is easy for seniors to chew and swallow, especially if they struggle with certain textures of food. Of course, you also need to make sure you elderly loved one has access to plenty of water and stays hydrated while they are at the picnic.
With a number of family reunions, community celebrations and summer holidays coming up, there are lots of opportunities for picnics that seniors can happily attend. Of course, there doesn’t need to be a reason to plan a lunch or dinner outdoors because elderly loved ones will most likely enjoy the outing and the buzz of activity that is sure to be present at the perfect picnic.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering in-home caregivers in Camden, CT, please contact the caring staff at Franciscan Ever There Care. Call today 203-630-2881.