Now is a challenging time to be, or to have, a loved one in assisted living. Anxiety over Covid-19, coupled with isolation, makes this a stressful time for everyone. However, there are things you can do to lighten the load and cheer up your loved one.

 

Stay in touch

This is crucial. While there may be some hearing or vision issues that make staying in touch via telephone, email, or text message, it’s still important to make the effort, especially when you can’t be there in person.

 

Write a letter

Letter writing has become a lost art. But receiving a letter from you or the grandkids may be just the thing that will brighten your senior’s day. Encourage younger family members to join in, especially if they can add drawings. (Be sure to spray letters and envelopes with a disinfecting spray and seal the envelope with a moist paper towel, not your tongue).

 

Try some Facetime

Facetime is more personal than a phone call, and you will be able to see for yourself how your loved one is doing. Again, getting the young ones to participate adds to the fun.

 

Structure your contact time

It’s best to schedule contact for the same time every day. It adds a sense of security and continuity if your loved one knows you’re going to reach out at a specific time every day.

 

Stay upbeat

Even if you’re worried and anxious yourself, try to convey a sense of calm when speaking to your loved ones. They respond to your tone of voice and facial expressions, and it’s best maintain an optimistic tone, especially when speaking about the future.

 

Talk about the good times

Talk about good times you’ve had in the past. Parties, get-togethers, or just time you were able to spend together. This will help keep your loved one in a cheerful mood.

 

Remind them that it won’t last forever

Now that vaccines are more readily available, this time of social isolation will eventually draw to a close. It’s also good for you to remember that Covid-19 induced isolation won’t last forever.

 

Involve the kids

For many quarantined seniors, hearing from the grandkids and great-grandkids is a high point. Involve them as much as possible when contacting your loved one.
Remember, even though you can’t be there in person, attempting to stay connected with your loved one is the best way to show that you care. It may even be possible to arrange some “window time”, where the family visits through a window. Remember to keep that positive tone throughout. Covid won’t last forever, and soon you’ll be able to visit in person. What’s most important is for your senior to know that they’re loved, cherished and above all missed.
Want to learn more about what’s happening at Belmont House? Visit our What’s Happening Now section for COVID related news.