Drastic times call for drastic measures, and the COVID-19 pandemic is a prime example. Millions of normally active elderly adults are now being asked to shelter-in-place and self-isolate so that they won’t be exposed to coronavirus. Unfortunately, it’s causing many of them to feel lonely, anxious and depressed. For family members who are looking out for them, finding some creative activities that they can do is a priority. If you’re currently caring for a self-isolating senior, here are 5 fun activities that you both will enjoy long after things return to normal.

How Staying Active Benefits Seniors

Numerous studies have found that seniors who stay physically and socially active typically benefit from those activities in these ways:

  • Sharper mental acuity and lower risk for developing dementia
  • Higher self-esteem
  • Faster healing rates and recovery times from illness
  • Able to sleep more restfully
  • Stronger bones and muscles
  • Less likely to be lonely, anxious or depressed

Researchers have also discovered that, in general, older adults who stay active well into their 70s and 80s tend to be more independent and live longer than seniors who don’t.

Fun Activities for Homebound Seniors

While taking all of the necessary COVID-19 precautions, here are 5 fun activities that you and your senior can enjoy together:

Get Outdoors

Just because you’re stuck at home doesn’t mean you can’t venture outdoors as-long-as you follow the local public health directives. Basking in the sunlight while engaging in some physical activities will expose you to much-needed Vitamin D and give you both a more positive outlook.

Some fun ways to spend time together outdoors include gardening, landscaping, taking a long walk (be sure to social distance), birdwatching or riding bikes.

Crafts and Hobbies

You’re never too old to learn new hobbies and crafts. Ask your senior for a list of hobbies or crafts that they’ve always wanted to try and then do them together while enjoying some laughs
and warm conversation.

Learning a new hobby or craft is also good for a senior’s manual dexterity and mental acuity, so try something like painting, drawing, baking, crocheting, scrapbooking, playing a musical instrument or maybe even learning a new language.

Reading

Reading allows an older adult to exercise their mind while immersing themselves in new topics. Whether it’s done with books, magazines, by using an e-re