Bonding with Loved Ones
Caregiving can be a rewarding experience as it offers opportunities to strengthen the relationship and connect with your loved ones.
Communicating effectively promotes your relationship and reduces misunderstanding, conflict and stress. Your loved one may find it challenging to make themselves understood, or understand what others are saying, because their senses dull over time. Changes in vision and hearing, and slowing of reaction time may impede communication. Slurred speech and memory loss due to illness or side effects from medication may also affect their ability to speak and respond clearly.
As caregivers, you can help by giving them eye contact, to show they have your attention. Listening patiently and actively by giving brief responses such as “I see” and “okay”, lets your loved one know you understand their concern. When conversing with your loved one, use simple words and short sentences, with an appropriate speed and tone of talking. Avoid using words that might be patronising or disrespectful. You can also validate their needs by asking them to do something, instead of ordering them.
Exercises and Activities You Can Do
Activities are a great way to engage your loved one. Consider their preferences and ability when suggesting activities for them to participate in. Having the ability to exercise a choice gives your loved one a sense of confidence. This will in turn increase their willingness to participate in the activities.
At home, simple activities like getting dresses, having a conversation, singing, or reading, can maintain their motor and cognitive skills. Taking part in outdoor recreational activities together can also build social connections, and may fulfil their emotional needs. Participating in regular physical activity may help you and your loved one to improve body balance, posture and flexibility, have better control of chronic disease symptoms, prevent falls and improve the overall well-being. Start off with some light exercises with your loved one at home like stretching.
|Chores||Preparing food, folding clothes|
|Intellectual||Playing chess, reading|
|Physical||Doing Tai Chi or light exercises such as stretching, taking a stroll|
|Social||Having coffee with friends, grocery shopping|
|Spritual||Playing, singing hymns|
Other exercises for yourself and loved ones who had a stroke
- Exercises for Stroke Patients – Lower Limb Exercises
- Exercises for Stroke Patients – Upper Limb Exercises
- Exercises for Stroke Patients – Theraband Exercises
- Exercises for Stroke Patients – Fun Exercises With Household Items
Outdoor Activities for Seniors in Wheelchairs
Caregiving requires spending quality time with your loved one. It is not just about providing for their physical needs. Planning for a day out for the senior in wheelchair is not difficult.
Here are some places and activities that you can consider:
Who Should You Inform?
Enjoy some shopping in the city, or in the heartlands.
Marvel at Singapore’s photo-worthy attractions at Changi Airport or Gardens by the Bay.
Be serenaded with a concert or show, at one of the performing arts centres in Singapore.
Some simple tips for a successful day out include packing an umbrella, carrying refreshments and medication, a cushion for comfort, and a backup ride (such as taxi or car services).
Going about in a wheelchair or walking aid may attract some attention to your loved one along the trip. If your loved one feels uncomfortable, spend a moment to talk about his/her feelings.
Activities for Bedbound Seniors
If your loved one is bedbound, there are activities you can do with them to stimulate their motor skills, elevate their mood, decrease anxiety, and give them a chance to interact.
Here are some activities that you can consider:
Who Should You Inform?
Body massage and passive exercises. Check with your loved one’s physiotherapist on the suitable level of physical activity.
Read from a book, magazine or newspaper.
Reminisce with photos, classic music, and old shows.
Personal grooming such as combing hair, trimming nails, and moisturising skin.
For person with advanced dementia, Namaste Care is a multi-sensory stimulation care approach to engage with the person.
If Your Loved One Has Dementia
If your loved one has dementia, you can find additional resources that can suit your needs here.
Additional Resources for Seniors
If your loved ones are seniors who are well and living in their own homes, or those requiring assistance at Community Care facilities (e.g. Nursing Homes, Centres), click here to find an array of resources under the AIC Wellness Programme.
The AIC Wellness Programme engages seniors through provision of meaningful activities to enhance their wellbeing and quality of life. For more information, email email@example.com.
Here are more tips to better care for your loved one.
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