Innovative Home Care: Using Your Parent's Hobbies and Skills to Help You Pursue Care Goals

Posted: 5/16/2016 1:26 PM by Interim HealthCare
Home care is not a one size fits all experience. In order for your aging loved one to get the most benefit for your care efforts for them, it is important that you focus on customizing the experience and creating a care approach that is tailored to them as a whole individual rather than just as a person with generic needs. This type of approach not only helps to ensure that your parent's particular needs are met, but also encourages better mental and emotional health because they feel that they are being honored, respected, and listened to as they age in place.

One innovative way that you can pursue your care goals within your home care journey is to utilize your parent's hobbies and skills. Everyone has special hobbies that they enjoy, skills that they have, or interests that they like to explore. By embracing these in your aging parent you can come up with ways that you can pursue your care goals and boost your care efforts while also ensuring that your parent is enjoying the highest quality of life possible.
Let these ideas inspire you to come up with creative ways that you can use your parent's hobbies and skills to pursue care goals:

Cooking. Has your parent always loved to cook, or wanted to explore cooking? This is a fantastic opportunity for you to help them enjoy better nutrition and to strengthen their mind. Encourage your parent to research recipes that they would like to try or to tell you about different types of food that they might like to cook so that you can find recipes. Break out old cookbooks that they used to use when you were younger or that you remember your grandparents using and let it be a starting point for sharing memories and enjoying conversations. Following recipes works the brain in a variety of ways, encouraging cognitive processing, critical thinking, memory, and problem solving. Encourage your parent to do as much of the recipe themselves as they can possibly do safely. Even if they have cognitive limitations or mobility issues, you can encourage them to participate by having them handle simple aspects such as tearing up lettuce or stirring.

Crocheting. Crocheting and knitting are exceptional activities for an elderly adult to enjoy, and a great way to pursue various care goals. The process of creating items with these skills requires concentration, planning, critical thinking, and memory skills. It also provides sensory stimulation through the colors and the tactile element of the yarn or other material. This makes your parent's mind sharper and more active. Crocheting and knitting also help to work the joints and muscles of the hands, reducing pain and stiffness related to arthritis and other issues. If your parent is particularly prolific, you can encourage them to make items that they can donate to charities, such as hats and blankets for NICU babies or cancer and HIV patients. This makes them feel more involved in the world around them and supports stronger emotional health.

Sports. Seniors who love sports may not be able to play them the way that they used to, but that does not mean that they have to abandon them all together. Consider finding a youth program that is looking for volunteers. Your parent can offer their skill and time to helping young people discover the love of the sport and polish their abilities. This keeps your parent active and supports better mental and emotional health. You can also modify the actions of their favorite sport to help keep your loved one more physically active. A visit to the driving range or batting cage, a round of mini-golf, or even playing body-activated video games are all options for staying active and reminiscing about a favorite sport.

If you have an aging loved one in need of home care contact Interim HealthCare today.