By: Kathryn Parks
After what feels like a long and dreary winter, spring is finally here. Warm weather is kind on arthritic joints, and beautiful weather encourages outdoor activity. As a caregiver to a beloved family member, you are probably eager to get out of the house with the seniors in your life.
With a little preparation, spring outings can be good for both you and your family members. Here’s how to go about it.
Choose an activity
You know your family member best. There are lots of great activities out there to enjoy, but not all of them are suitable for every person. It’s important to choose an activity everyone will like. A few ideas include a picnic at the park, fishing, bird watching, or going for a walk.
If you’d rather stay at home but still want to get out with your family member, gardening or simply taking your meal outside can be an enjoyable activity.
Although going outside has many health benefits for both you and your family members, staying safe is also important. Some of this is common sense safety, like wearing life jackets when out on a boat or by a large body of water. Here are a few other safety tips our caregivers keep in mind that may be helpful:
- Allergies can make a fun trip miserable
If you or your loved one has allergies, spending time outside during the height of pollen season could be less fun if they’re coughing and sneezing the whole way through. Make sure to address allergies before going out, so the outing is as enjoyable as possible for everyone.
- Wear sunscreen
Even if it’s a cloudy day, be sure everyone is wearing sunscreen before going out. A cool, breezy day at the beach may fool you into thinking you don’t need it, but you may still end up with a nasty sunburn. It’s always best to stay safe, and stay sunscreened. If you’re going to the ocean, make sure your sunscreen is also reef safe, for the sake of the wildlife that make it their home.
- Bring extra clothes
They say “April showers bring May Flowers” but if you dressed for a clear day and end up in a storm, the outing will be a lot less fun. Bring dry, clean clothes for your outing, and plan layers. If it warms up you can always take some layers off, but if you don’t have anything to put on, the outing may be cut short due to how chilly it is.
- Bring plenty to drink
Staying hydrated is very important, and it’s also something easily forgotten. Bring along a few drinks, and make sure both you and your family member are drinking them throughout the day.
Consider hiring a companion
If your family is pining to get out but you don’t have the time, a companion can help keep them safe while they go out. They can help with driving, logistics, and being there in case of accident or injury. They can also give you a welcome break, so you can focus more on enjoying yourself and quality time with your parents, rather than struggling just to be there.
For more information on companion or respite care throughout Annapolis or Ellicott City, Maryland, contact our compassionate caregivers at Homewatch CareGivers of Annapolis today.