Feb 4 Care Mission

Visit a Senior

Help combat loneliness by sharing some joy and companionship with a senior neighbor, relative or friend.

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The Facts: A chat over tea. A long walk. Shopping and lunch with a friend. Some things are just better in person. Technology advances can help us stay connected, but it’s also important to remember the importance of catching up IRL (in real life). Loneliness can have a very real impact on health and wellness, especially for seniors. According to a University of California, San Francisco study, among participants who were older than 60 years, loneliness was a predictor of functional decline and death.

The good news is that we can take steps to help reduce senior loneliness by stopping in to see our senior loved ones. Here are a few tips to help you have a great visit.

  1. Pick the Right Time – Seniors may be more alert in the morning or lunchtime. Understand when your senior loved one is at their best, and plan your visit accordingly.

  2. Plan an Activity – Whether it’s lunch, a walk, or board game, having a plan can help make the visit more structured and entertaining for you both.

  3. Prepare for Conversation – Think about recent events or news to share that may interest them, but make sure to keep the conversation two-sided. Ask them about their opinions or advice on a topic.

  4. Bring Some Fun – Whether it’s photos, a small gift, or even a well-behaved family pet, these “props” can help keep the conversation going and bring some smiles.

  5. Avoid Awkwardness – Some visits can feel uncomfortable or strained. Help keep it positive and fun by keeping your visit to an hour or two rather than an all-day marathon. Perhaps plan shorter, more often visits instead of long ones.

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Share your care mission experience or more care tips. Then, vote for your favorite story or tip.

Community Comments

  1. Katherine

    9 Missions Completed

    0

    I went by my neighbor’s house to restock the Hearth basket with firewood, and also went out and reloaded the firewood cart, and placed it by the fireplace. I enjoyed about a 20-minute visit after I was done!!

  2. Donna

    8 Missions Completed

    1

    Went to visit a friend in the hospital. Listened to some funny stories that she told. Hopefully she will get better soon.

  3. Lenore A Daw

    12 Missions Completed

    0

    Good tips

  4. Stacy

    3 Missions Completed

    1

    I just visited with a friend who used to be a neighbor but she is now I hospice care. She enjoys hearing about my teenage daughter- lots of stories there! Also, I took some old photos to share with her and a small treat for Valentine’s Day. Thankfully she is still coherent and able to enjoy our visits but I could tell this time she rested her eyes more often but I am happy I can take the time to visit with her.

  5. Jeannie

    1 Mission Completed

    1

    When my mother-in-law was in a nursing home, she would love to go for a ride in the truck and sing raindrops keep falling on my head even though it is a quick 15 minute trip, it just makes her whole week to be able to do it.

  6. Rita

    14 Missions Completed

    1

    I have a select items at home for anyone who comes to visit the senior in my home.

  7. Nancy Cooksey

    17 Missions Completed

    1

    Had a nice chat with my brother this weekend as his wife is in a care facility due to Parkinson’s! He gets lonely living alone and likes to visit! I must remember to not let too long of time go by between visits!

  8. Lashonda

    2 Missions Completed

    1

    Katherine Mission statement I like that..

  9. Margie

    0 Missions Completed

    1

    Valentines for sick shut ln friends and love ones.made candy gifts and beautiful cards. Del about 25 so far. Also nursing home too.so rewarding.lots of beautiful stories.

  10. Katherine

    9 Missions Completed

    0

    I was able to have one last meal with my dear friend today who is blind and 57 years old. We had a great visit that lasted for about an hour, over coffee fried fish and cake,,he will be moving to Tennessee tomorrow and missed greatly!! But I know the life that he has waiting for him there, will surely be a blessing to him! I think I enjoyed that visit twice as much as he did.

  11. Gloria

    41 Missions Completed

    0

    I visited a senior and we talked about all the places she used to travel to years ago.

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