Staying active and getting out into the world outside their community is important for seniors living in assisted living. Outings are also an opportunity for seniors and caregivers to spend some quality time together. However, as abilities and circumstances change, it can be challenging to find outings that match a senior’s energy levels. To help, we’ve put together a list of everyday outing ideas for you and your loved one.
As you read through the following list of outing ideas, consider what your loved one’s former interests and hobbies were. How did they like to spend their time when they were more independent? Choose an outing that allows your loved one to engage with a favorite pastime.
- Go on a short drive. As seniors become less mobile, it can be difficult for them to get out and enjoy their neighborhood by foot. Taking them on a drive is a great way for them to experience their community without having to walk on their own. Pack a picnic or a snack to enjoy in a park and make an afternoon of it.
- Take them on a walk. Another way for your loved one to get out and enjoy a change of scenery is to take them on a walk by pushing them in a wheelchair. Bring them to a mall or a local park, somewhere they can see other people and feel included in the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
- Bring them on errands. When seniors move into an assisted living community, it is often the daily routines of independent life that they miss the most—things most of us take for granted. Even if it would take you longer to complete your weekly shopping trip, consider bringing your loved one along to help run errands.
- Go out for a meal. No matter how good the food in your loved one’s assisted living community is, eating in a dining hall can get tiresome after a while. Spice up your loved one’s meal routine by taking them out to eat! A mid-morning brunch or lunch are good options, being times when restaurants are likely to be less busy.
- Attend a concert. Find a local community concert in your area, and bring your senior along. Music helps reduce anxiety and stress for all of us, but can be especially therapeutic for seniors with Alzheimer’s or dementia. If possible, choose a type of concert that connects your loved one to cherished memories or favorite genres.
Nobody wants to be cooped up inside the same four walls day after day. Going on regular outings is important for seniors’ mental health and physical wellbeing. It can be challenging to find an outing that suits your loved one’s interests and circumstances, but with a little advance planning, you’re both sure to enjoy yourselves.