Holiday Tips to Keep Elderly Loved Ones Healthy and Safe
With less than three weeks until Christmas, the holiday season is in full swing. Stores are filled with Christmas decorations, trees and holiday lights are up and holiday parties fill the calendar.
While all the previously mentioned things are aspects of the holiday season, for many, the core meaning of the holidays is that it is a time to reminisce and visit loved ones. In fact, according to the United States Department of Transportation the Thanksgiving and Christmas/New Year’s holiday periods are among the busiest long-distance travel periods of the year.
While this is a glorious time of the year for most, it is important to remember that for many of our elderly loved ones it can create a mixture of emotions ranging from happiness, gratitude and love to sadness, loneliness and stress.
To help you and your elderly loved ones make this holiday season one of happiness and good memories we have compiled some holiday senior safety tips.
- Plan Ahead – If you plan on taking an elderly loved one on a trip, make sure you plan your route ahead of time and add in extra stops for bathroom breaks and to stretch legs.
- Pack Heavy – Make sure your elderly loved one brings clothing appropriate for the weather, healthy snacks and an extra two days’ worth of any medication they regularly take.
- Avoid Traffic – If at all possible, try to travel outside of peak traffic times. Traffic can be tiring and stressful for an elderly loved one.
- The Tree- A fire resistant fake tree is ideal, but if your elderly loved one insists on a real tree make sure it remains green and watered. Also, keep the tree away from heaters, radiators or fireplaces.
- Lights- When choosing lights to put up, opt for a newer set that has been tested for safety. Modern holiday lights typically have thicker wiring and better fuses to prevent overheating.
- Keep walkways clear of holiday decorations, tape over extension cords to prevent tripping hazards and use non-slip grip for any door mat decorations.
- Try to limit the consumption of salty and spicy food, as well as alcohol. These will effect blood pressure and may cause issues with prescription medications.
- Minimize the risk of a choking incident by making sure your elderly loved one doesn’t have to dine alone.
- Follow any dietary restrictions your elderly loved one has.
- Make sure they stay hydrated. This will prevent fatigue, dehydration and a multitude of other health issues.
With all the decorations, visitors and new surroundings, keeping you or your elderly loved ones home safe and accessible is equally as important as any of the above holiday tips.
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