Published: Friday 24th April 2020
Senior citizens across the UK are facing difficult changes to their routines following government isolation guidelines. Our 6 top tips for over 70’s during coronavirus will help you to stay fit, healthy, happy and occupied throughout this time.
The government has issuedimportant guidelinesregarding protecting ourselves against the spread of Coronavirus. It is advised that anyone over the age of 70 stay at home and isolate themselves from all non-essential trips out of the house. The government also advises that all of us should avoid contact with anyone who displays symptoms of the virus, and to follow social distancing rules (2 metre distance) with anyone not a member of your household. This advice is perhaps most vital to those over the age of 70 but should be followed by everyone at all times.
Although aspects of all our daily lives have undoubtedly changed, there are still many things that can stay the same. Keeping to your routine is one of the best ways to create a sense of normality through this disruptive period. Simple things, such as waking up and going to sleep at the same time each morning and night can help to keep your body clock ticking as usual. This makes sticking to your routine much easier, and will also help to avoid sleepless nights.
We learn from a young age that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Stuart Allen, Chef at Mountview care home, suggests eating a healthy balanced diet that is rich in fibre, whole-grains and vitamins. Not only will this help keep your immune system on top form, it will also keep you feeling healthy and content.
“Some great options for breakfast could be porridge with fruit or scrambled eggs on toast. It is important to eat foods that you enjoy and also provide the most nutritional value for you. As the weather warms, it is also key to remember to stay hydrated and drink lots of water. We make fresh juices for our residents to provide essential vitamins and minerals as well as hydration – plus they taste amazing!”
The government lockdown doesn’t mean you have to stop doing all the things you enjoy. Many social groups are still offering live broadcasts to join from the safety of your home. This is also a great time to call friends and family and keep in touch with regular catch ups.
During such unprecedented times, it is heart-warming to see friends, families and communities pulling together to support one another. Whenever possible, ask friends and family to help make arrangements for the delivery of any essential products such as food, toiletries and medicines.
Supermarkets are now offering measures to support elderly shoppers, such as protected early shopping hours and priority online delivery slots. Stores have also implemented strict rules to avoid stockpiling, ensuring everybody has access to the food they need. Think about making a list of the meals you enjoy, and create a weekly plan so you can purchase all the groceries you need in one trip.
Local authorities and charities, such asAge UK and the Local Authority, are also offering lots of support and can help with shopping and prescriptions. Have a look at their sites for more information about how they can help you through these uncertain times.
Just because we are unable to visit our loved ones, that doesn’t mean we can’t keep in touch. There are lots of methods that families and friends can use to enjoy regular catch ups. Social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter offer a way to see and interact with your friends and loved ones. For a more personal touch, video calling apps such as Facetime, Skype and Zoom enable you to use webcams in your devices to see each other on screen whilst chatting. For fun, try writing letters to your family and friends. Perhaps you could ask to receive drawings from your grandchildren to brighten your day!
With all the change to your routine, it is important to take the time to focus on your mental wellbeing. It is helpful to spend some time in your garden, if you have one, or open a window to enjoy the fresh air. If you are able, try your hand at gardening by planting flowers or seeds to brighten up your outside space. This could create a peaceful sanctuary for you to enjoy while spending more time at home. Residents at Ideal Carehomes continue to enjoy their landscaped gardens, pottering outside, sowing seeds and harvesting vegetables and herbs for use in the kitchen.
Perhaps you could aim to get some odd jobs completed around the house. This will occupy your mind, and give you a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction when it has been completed. This feeling will help to keep your mind active and positive during this time. Perhaps this could be the perfect time to reorganise your kitchen cupboards.
Fishing out photo albums is a great way to reminisce about special memories you have. Why not take some time to look through your albums with a cup of tea and a cake? It could also be a great idea to research your family history, and trace your family tree back to see who you discover.
Your mental health is just as important as your physical health. During times like this, physical health can easily be neglected while we are isolating ourselves. This is the perfect time to look for new and fun ways to keep your body active. This can be as simple as walking around your house and garden, dancing to some uplifting music (extra points for singing at the same time!), or using an exercise machine. Kitty Lehane who lives at Beaumont Hall care home enjoys regular armchair exercise classes to keep fit. She says,
“Just 30 minutes of exercise really boosts my mood and makes me feel refreshed. I love to do armchair aerobics; I think exercising is the key to keeping your mind and body feeling young.”
Fun workouts can be easily found on websites like YouTube, and the NHS website offersmore adviceabout staying active at home.
Ideal Carehomes understands that isolation can be a lonely and worrying time for everyone. If you or a loved one are finding things difficult at home, please contact our dedicated Care Team for further advice or to see how we can help:
Tel: 0113 385 3800
Live chat: idealcarehomes.co.uk