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Activities can not only help home-bound seniors fulfill their social and self-esteem needs but can also help them care for and entertain themselves. Activities for home-bound individuals will vary depending on their interests, physical and cognitive abilities. There are three main kinds of activities that caregivers find useful: Passive, energetic and interactive.
Passive activities require no participation on the part of the senior. Sleeping, watching television, listening to the radio and reading are all examples of passive activities. Passive activities can be enjoyable to many seniors and also can be meaningful. For instance finding the seniors favourite television shows, channels, radio stations can provide great entertainment and also show that you care.
Energetic activities require some involvement and response from another person. Doing puzzles such as Sudoku or crosswords, drawing pictures and craft projects, getting dressed and helping prepare dinner are all examples of energetic activities. Activities that require action on the seniors part can be extremely positive for self-esteem. Activities of daily living are another example of energetic activities and include all the things that we do to keep ourselves alive and healthy. For example, moving around, maintaining personal hygiene, dressing and eating. Allowing a homebound senior to do as many activities of daily living as possible. Every little bit of independence the person maintains will play a role in increasing self-esteem.
Interactive Activities rely on connection with a person or pet. Sometimes the best interactive activity is simply an engaging conversation. Interactive activities are great for helping fulfill the senior’s social needs and can be the best part of their day. Consider going with your loved one to a movie, museum, or organise any outing that has been customary and can be sustained. For example, if your loved one has typically gone to a cafe to have coffee and read the newspaper, you can be instrumental in this ritual. This can bring connectedness, predictability and a sense of accomplishment.