Boredom in older people can have a significant effect on quality of life. Boredom is often brushed off as an insignificant side effect of ageing, but mental health issues such as depression can stem from extended periods of solitude and a lack of stimulation.
An irritable, impatient nature can often be a sign of boredom so if you or someone in your life seem to have an altered temperament it may be because they are spending large amounts of time with no entertainment or company.
There are many ways of combating boredom in older people, helped by the arrival of Summer. With brighter weather comes more opportunity for activities and days out, so as the top telecare provider to the elderly, we take the well-being of our customers very seriously and have shared some of our top tips for dealing with boredom in older people.
If you’re able, spend some time outside in the garden. Seeing your plants and flowers blossom will give you a huge sense of achievement as well as making your surroundings look beautiful. Gardening can be adapted to suit your needs and there are many tools such as gardening stools that can aid you.
If you don’t have a garden of your own, allotment gardening is a great option. This is also a way of getting involved with your community and meeting like minded individuals.
If you’re not able to get your hands dirty, even sitting outside for a short period will give you a boost. Perhaps you can watch someone else garden or read a book. The fresh air and vitamin D will be invaluable to your body and mental health.
Puzzles & Colouring Books
Speaking of books, puzzles and colouring books are making a comeback right now and could be the perfect way to prevent boredom in older people. There are so many different types of puzzles to choose from now, including: Sudoku, crosswords, word searches, anagrams and Kakuro.
Before you know it, you will have spent hours trying to fill in the gaps and complete the challenge in front of you. What a sense of achievement it will bring to your day if you can complete some of these puzzles. Not only that, but such is the difficulty of some of these puzzles, you’ll also be giving your brain a workout – which is very useful in the fight against dementia.
If you’re more of a creative person and want to relax than a colouring book is the way to go. There are plenty to choose from and have become very popular among the younger generation.
There are many ways to keep your brain active by learning. One way is to take a class. Local colleges and community centres offer adult courses on everything from floristry to computer science. Or if you are good at something you could even offer your services and teach. The Open University also welcomes older students if you’re interested in more formal learning.
If you find it difficult to leave the house, you can learn online for free at websites such as futurelearn.com.
Get out for the day
It’s always a good idea to get out for the day, especially as the weather gets warmer. If you or an older person in your life struggles with mobility, even a simple journey in the car can be a stimulating day out. Going for a drive round town is a good idea for older people who don’t leave their homes much as they rarely get to see the new things that are going on. You could also stop for lunch or take a picnic for the car.
Visiting a farm or a zoo during Summer is always an uplifting experience because there are plenty of baby animals. Public attractions will usually have mobility scooters or wheelchairs if you don’t feel able to walk around all day.
Silver Surfers & Gamers
The older generation are starting to find their feet on the internet and on gaming devices such as tablets and consoles. The internet is a great way for the elderly to discover new things and to also keep in touch with their loved ones through social media.
Gaming meanwhile can help stimulate the brain, whilst also providing you with hours of entertainment. You can even combine the internet and gaming by playing online scrabble!
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