Are you thinking about brightening up someone’s day in a Nursing Home?

Although Nursing Homes can provide a great deal of care for many, adjusting to life at a Nursing Home can be difficult. The latest statistics by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare[DC1]  show that over half (52%) of permanent residents in Aged Care Homes showed symptoms of depression.

Being in an unfamiliar environment is a challenge for anyone, and seniors are no exception. However, a 2018 study shows that being happy helps reduce the risk of dementia among seniors by 50%. So how do we combat depression?  

If you have a loved one in a Nursing Home, you must make the most of your visits so they don’t feel forgotten or neglected. Your visits will also give them something fun to look forward to. So here’s a list of ways you can help your loved one if they need cheering up in a Nursing Home.

Participate in activities together

According to Beyond Blue Australia, having quality connections with family and friends helps older people maintain a healthy mental and physical well-being. As their loved ones, it’s essential to keep that connection with them and ease their sense of loneliness.

Before your visit, try thinking of activities you can do together. Some activities that you could do are:

  • Taking walks

  • Playing a musical instrument or singing together

  • Reading

  • Making arts and crafts

  • Bringing your pet from home to visit

There are so many things that you and your loved ones can do together to keep them distracted and happy.

Take a short outing

Being cooped up in the same place each day can be daunting, so why not give your loved one a change in scenery? If they are well and able, you could take them for a half or full-day trip outside the Nursing Home.

It’s good to take them to places they’ll love, like a meal in their favourite restaurant or a family member’s home. You could also take them for a pampering session at a hair salon or a religious institution if they are pious. The main goal is to snap them out of a depressive mental state by showing them something different.

Ask staff for tips

Nursing Home staff are usually happy to provide feedback on how to cheer your loved one, as they have the best experience in this behaviour. So don’t be hesitant to ask them for tips and feedback! For example, you could ask them what other families are doing to help their loved ones in the Nursing Home.

Nursing Home staff would know their area the best, so be sure to ask them if there are any activities that you and your loved one can do on-site. Perhaps the home has activities you and your family can join together with your loved one. You could also observe if there are other residents struggling and organise group activities that you could do together.

Make plans

Give your loved one something to look forward to by talking to them about plans and activities that you can do in the future. For example, you can schedule a monthly picnic session with friends and families and talk about it with your loved one.

Planning visits are also an excellent way to get your loved one excited. So organise visits from relatives and friends that could visit them from time to time, and tell your loved one about it. It’ll give them something that they can anticipate and plan.

Turn their room into their home

Your loved one should live comfortably in a homely environment. So as much as you can, decorate your loved one’s room like their home. For example, you could bring familiar items like old photos and memorabilia and furnish the room with gifts, scented oils, and bright flowers.

Don’t forget to check with the Nursing Home staff before bringing in any item, but also ask them for ideas! They might give you some new perspectives on what to do with the room.

Moving into a Nursing Home can be tricky and uncomfortable for your loved one. Fortunately, there are many things you can do to make their day better. CareAbout assist carers in finding the proper care for their loved ones and navigating the various care options available. For experienced help in finding a suitable Nursing Home, contact our team for a personalised discussion and arrangement.