Fall is a wonderful time of year to plan outings in just about any part of the country. The cooler, more predictable weather makes outdoor excursions more fun for the whole family. And countless research studies have shown that older adults reap health benefits from getting out and about in nature and their communities. Some of the advantages include decreased anxiety, and lower rates of depression.
But many elderly people have special considerations that must be taken into account when planning outings, especially for loved ones suffering from memory loss or cognitive decline. But by keeping a few tips in mind you can ensure everyone has a great time.
- Have reasonable expectations on distance and activity. When deciding where to go and what to do, it’s necessary to consider how long your loved one can ride in a car and whether or not they could stay overnight. Many health conditions can be potentially dangerous if something happens a great distance away from necessary medical care. Setting realistic travel expectations lets you narrow down the types of activities you can plan.
- Research ahead of time. Are you hoping to be outdoors mostly, or stay inside? Many fall activities give plenty of time to soak up sunshine, like apple picking or pumpkin patches.
- Consider mobility issues. Going for a drive is a great fall activity, as it allows you to quickly and easily enjoy the changing leaf colors the season brings. For seniors with difficulty walking, this is especially appealing. Many parts of the country have online resources that let you monitor the change in leaves, allowing you to plan a trip that maximizes the sights.