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A senior lady happily does some chair exercises.

Having a leisure and lifestyle program for seniors has positive effects on their health and wellness. This is the reason why nursing homes and aged care facilities are presently becoming more consumer-directed. Now, to come up with a successful leisure and lifestyle program, client assessment must be done. As care providers, identifying what the client likes and what makes them happy should be the key focus. Think about the kind of activities that will make them feel included. Be creative about those that can help them boost their self-esteem. These are just some of the considerations to take.

Every staff member in our aged care facility contributes to the success of the program.

Other Factors to Consider In Starting A Leisure and Lifestyle Program for Seniors

Designing a leisure and lifestyle program for seniors is not easy. Aged care facilities that aim to provide a consumer-centred program have to consider the individual needs of their residents. This is especially the case with dementia sufferers. Plus, besides the factors mentioned above, there are other things to consider. These include their religious beliefs, social past, and role in their families. Identifying the stage of their dementia is also essential in coming up with a suitable program. Other factors also include the abilities of the senior. Do they have hearing impairments or limited mobility? How about their attention span and behaviour? What real or perceived barriers could prevent them from joining in on the leisure activities? What are their hobbies? These are just a few questions to find answers to so the facility can develop an appropriate program.

Developing A Person-Centered Leisure and Lifestyle Program for Seniors

Doing individual client assessment is essential in mapping out a person-centred leisure and lifestyle program for seniors. There must be an interdisciplinary team to conduct the assessment. The seniors, including their families, close friends, and caregivers should also be involved in the process. This will be beneficial in many ways, such as getting to know the senior individually and establishing potential risks. It will also help them understand the preferences and needs of the elderly. Additionally, it will help them acknowledge the ethnicity, religious beliefs, and cultural values of their senior clients. After all, these are important factors to consider. These circumstances may not allow them to participate in some leisure and lifestyle activities. The results of the individual assessments will then help the facility come up with relaxation, recreation, club affiliations activities and others.

What Comprises A Good Leisure and Lifestyle Program for Seniors?

For a leisure and lifestyle program for seniors to be meaningful, it must:

  • Be entertaining and inspiring
  • Boost their satisfaction in life
  • Compensate for their lost abilities
  • Be culturally and religiously sensitive
  • Help maintain, if not improve, their present skills

Moreover, every staff member in an aged care facility contributes to the success of any program. They must all be caring and considerate to the seniors individually. Ultimately, working together will make the seniors feel truly engaged.

Examples of Activities In A Leisure and Lifestyle Program for Seniors

A good leisure and lifestyle program for seniors consists of sensory experiences, physical exercises, and emotional & spiritual outlets. For those who are just starting their own program, there are several tried and tested activities for seniors. Recreation Therapists and Leisure Coordinators observed these activities to have the most reliably successful outcomes.

Individual Activities

You may not realise it but there are lots of solo activities for seniors that they can enjoy alone too. These include beauty therapy, grooming, walking, and music therapy. Moreover, puzzles, walking, massage, letter-writing, and assistance with meals can be interesting too.

Group Activities

When it comes to group activities try chair exercises, balloon games, quizzes, and cooking. Likewise, bus trips, crafting, painting, sing-along, happy hours, and concerts can all be fun. In addition to these, reminiscing sessions, carpet bowl, skittles, gardening, visits from children, BBQs or church services are also effective.

Final Thoughts About Planning A Leisure and Lifestyle Program for Seniors

In a nutshell, there is a wide-array of individual and group activities to try. Apart from these, the aged care facility can also experiment with other activities. This way, they can figure out the best inclusions to a leisure and lifestyle program for seniors.

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