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Guest Blog: Golden Years, Golden Destinations: Tips for Traveling with Seniors

 

With more seniors now than ever before, there has never been a better time for retirees and those enjoying their golden years to get out there and explore all the world has to offer. Whether it’s a road trip down memory lane, or jet-setting around the globe, traveling is an excellent way for seniors to stay connected with the world and experience new cultures. But when planning a trip with elderly loved ones, it’s important to take into account the special needs of senior travelers.

 

8 Tips for Traveling with Seniors

  1. Check With a Doctor Before You Travel

A doctor can provide valuable insight into whether traveling is safe and feasible for your senior. They may be able to identify potential medical risks or recommend factors to consider when planning the best course of action.

For instance, if your senior has difficulty walking long distances or needs special medical equipment during travel, their physician can guide how to best manage these situations while away from home.

  1. Keep Their Mobility in Mind

Mobility is one of the most important factors to consider when managing a trip with senior companions. First and foremost, start by understanding any physical limitations that may be present in your elderly travel companions. If they have difficulty walking, or if stairs are a challenge, this should be taken into consideration when booking transportation or lodging accommodations.

Consider taking along a wheelchair or walker for their convenience during the trip and look for options that don’t involve too much walking such as river cruises or train rides. Also, keep in mind that older travelers may need more frequent rest stops while en route to their destination; plan accordingly so no one feels rushed or overwhelmed during the journey!

  1. Prepare Personal and Medical Documentation

It is important to prepare and bring personal and medical documentation when traveling with seniors. This includes copies of their identification, insurance cards, and any necessary medical prescriptions or treatment instructions. A personal health record app can also be useful for storing and easily accessing this information if it is needed while traveling.

  1. Take Frequent Breaks

One of the most important tips for traveling with seniors is to make sure you plan for frequent breaks during your journey. Taking regular breaks from any long drive or flight can help prevent fatigue and discomfort, which are both common issues for older travelers.

Breaks also provide an opportunity for seniors to get out and stretch their legs, use the restroom, or grab a snack or drink. Planning ahead and allowing yourself extra time in case of rest stops along the way can make all the difference in having an enjoyable trip. Including activities like snacks and games into your break plan can help keep spirits high as well!

  1. Check Your Diet

It is important to understand what types of food your senior companions can and cannot eat. Ask them what they prefer so you can plan meals accordingly while traveling. It may also be beneficial to ask their doctor or nutritionist about possible dietary restrictions before departing on your adventure.

In addition, make sure there will be food options that meet these requirements wherever you plan on going! If necessary, pack snacks such as nuts or dried fruit that your senior companion can eat instead of relying solely on meal stops along the way.

  1. Do not Forget to Carry Medicine

One of the most important tips for traveling with seniors is not forgetting their medicine! The first step should be reviewing your senior’s prescriptions and medications list with their doctor before leaving. Make sure you have an up-to-date list of all the medications they need, including any over-the-counter drugs that may be necessary.

Also, consider bringing along an extra supply of medications in case there are any delays in the journey or unexpected detours. Be sure to pack each medication separately, labelling them clearly so they won’t get mixed up with other items in a bag.

  1. Travel Insurance is a Must

Travel insurance provides coverage for medical expenses, trip cancellations, and lost luggage – all of which are especially important when traveling with an elderly person who may require special care or medication on their trip.

It also helps protect against any financial losses if something unexpected arises that prevents the trip from taking place. Travel insurance ensures that both the senior traveler and their family members are fully covered in the event of a problem during their travels.

For those who plan on taking a vacation with an elderly loved one, travel insurance should absolutely be at the top of your list when preparing for your journey.

  1. Confirm and Re-Confirm Your Travel Details

When planning a trip with older adults, it’s a good idea to stay vigilant and double-check all the details a few times. Due to age-related cognitive changes, elderly travelers may have difficulty retaining information about the itinerary and may require extra reminders.

Additionally, you should also be prepared to assist with packing and other preparation tasks. As the departure date approaches, ensure that all travel arrangements with airlines, hotels, and other destinations are confirmed to ensure smooth sailing.

Final Thoughts

Traveling with seniors is a great way to make wonderful memories that will last a lifetime. With the right planning and preparation, senior travelers can have an enjoyable and safe experience.

Don’t forget to ask your senior friends or family members what they need to feel comfortable and secure while traveling. Respect their preferences and plan accordingly. Prioritize safety, convenience, and comfort to ensure everyone’s needs are met during the journey.

Author Bio:

Jigar Patel is the Founder of Health-e, a HealthTech app that simplifies health records management along with providing personalized and preventative healthcare solutions. Although he has 20+ years of operations and management experience in the EPC domain, Jigar’s true passion lies in making healthcare simpler, faster and more accessible for doctors and patients alike. He strongly believes that people need to be empowered to participate in their own healthcare and is constantly thinking of ways to build this into his app. He loves to keep things simple be it in life, product design, his work or the content he develops. Being married for 10 years and having 2 kids have taught him that perspective matters, so you can always count on him to share new perspectives on various topics.

By |2023-01-18T12:39:32-05:00January 18th, 2023|Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog, News Posts|Comments Off on Guest Blog: Golden Years, Golden Destinations: Tips for Traveling with Seniors

4 Home Improvements Caregivers Should Make


Paige A. Mitchell
If you’re caring for a family member at home, you’ll want to ensure your house is a safe, healthy environment for everyone involved. You’ll likely have some adjustments to make in order to make your home more comfortable for an ill or impaired loved one. Consider the four home improvements below.

1. Declutter and re-decorate

Keep floors clear of toys and shoes. Strategically rearrange the furniture, so that your loved one is able to remain stimulated and engaged while they sit. For example, they may enjoy some natural sunlight and the view of nature from a comfortable chair near a window. Personal touches and familiar objects can make Alzheimer’s patients more comfortable.

2. Enhanced access

It’s important to review each room in the house to determine how accessible it is to someone who is ill or impaired. The American Association of Retired Persons’ checklist includes zero-threshold and wide entrances for wheelchairs and walkers, low light switches and door knobs that are reachable to someone in a wheelchair, and non-slip flooring and grab bars in at least one bathroom.

3. Maintain your home

Whether you’re caring for someone who is ill or not, it’s important to conduct regular home maintenance to ensure it’s a truly healthy environment. For example, replacing batteries in smoke detectors is especially important if your loved one is forgetful and susceptible to forgetting that something is on the stove. Take full advantage of your home repair insurance to save time, energy, and money on repairs.

4. Ask for help

Fifty percent of caregivers report feeling depressed. If you’re suffering from fatigue, isolation, irritable, and/or ill, it’s important to take a step back to take care of yourself. Don’t forget to ask for help when you need it. Seek an expert opinion for objective advice on whether you should consider placing your loved one in assisted care.

By |2022-10-26T10:19:40-05:00November 19th, 2022|Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog, News Posts|Comments Off on 4 Home Improvements Caregivers Should Make

Guest Blog: Top 5 Indoor Games for Senior Citizens to Play

Playing games with older relatives is a great way to keep older family members.

  • Engaged
  • Alarm
  • Concentrate

Also, while building muscles, it showed them a good time!

For the elderly, playing fun, low-impact brain games may be a good way to stay sharp and alert at all times. Research has shown that older adults who often stimulate their brains through active, educational activities tend to score higher on memory and cognitive tests than those who do not participate in sports.

Clear the board game on the top of the cabinet and use it. Indoor games may be one of the best ways to keep the elderly mentally healthy and active. It does more than providing entertainment. Chess is an amazing game to play, and the best chess learning rules seem simple and easy to learn, but the skills involved are huge and bring many health and psychological benefits. It can make your mind young, active, and entertaining at the same time.

We have compiled 5 top memory games for adults: Here are five indoor activities for the elderly, which are sure to make you spend a pleasant day.

  • Complete a Puzzle
  • Play Board and Card Games
  • Chess and Checkers
  • Card Games
  • Sudoku

Complete a Puzzle:

Word games for the elderly, such as crossword puzzles, can help maintain a memory. The challenge of the puzzle helps the brain to form and maintain connections. Crosswords involve the left and right sides of the brain. Older adults’ word games also require logical reasoning. Crossword puzzles can also help,

  • Older people learn new words
  • Recall vocabulary

Playing crosswords can promote,

  • Relaxation, which can have a healing
  • Calming effect, especially during a busy week
  •  Older people don’t have to complete the crossword puzzles alone! For families, this is a fun activity that can be done together, or it can be a bond for a group of older adults.

Play Board and Card Games:

Card games are a great way to think spontaneously, entertain and get along with others, and many games can be used by any number of players, from two to ten or more. Many seniors grew up playing card games, so be sure to ask them what games they like. Some seniors may prefer active and considerate games, such as bridge games or poker games. For others, playing simpler games such as,

  • Blackjack
  • War may be more fun

You can study other card games such as Uno that go beyond traditional game rules.

Chess and Checkers:

Chess is an amazing game. These rules seem simple and easy to understand, but the skills involved are huge. For decades, playing chess has been easy, and you can never really stop learning the subtleties of the game. Chess is about strategy, problem-solving, and footstep thinking. It is a great game for older people to participate and stay mentally active while having fun at the same time. Checkers is an improved version of the game, with fewer pieces and simpler rules, and a good choice. Is it better? The manufacturer’s chessboards and chessboards come in many different shapes and styles, including larger versions designed specifically for seniors with weaker vision and motor skills.

Card Games

Card games are a great way to think spontaneously, entertain and get along with others, and many games can be used by any number of players, from two to ten or more. Many seniors grew up playing card games, so be sure to ask them what games they like. Some seniors may prefer active and considerate games, such as bridge games or poker games. For others, playing simpler games (such as blackjack or war) may be more fun. Or, you can study other card games such as Uno that go beyond traditional game rules.

Sudoku

Sudoku is a popular pencil puzzle. It requires you to use problem-solving skills in a fun and easy-to-learn way. Sudoku can be used on almost any digital platform and traditional paper. Besides, you can play it online. Sudoku requires logic and memory skills, which can push the brain to establish connections. Strategic thinking can also help you improve your concentration and ability to make decisions in a short period. Besides, when you complete the puzzle correctly, there will be a sense of pride and achievement. Sudoku is not the only game that can help older people build memory.

 

 

By |2022-10-26T10:19:20-05:00November 17th, 2022|Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog, News Posts|Comments Off on Guest Blog: Top 5 Indoor Games for Senior Citizens to Play

Guest Blog: Budgeting for Seniors and Those on Fixed Incomes

Most seniors have a fixed, limited income. Even though it may not seem like a whole lot, there are ways to budget and make the fixed income work to your advantage. After all, you know exactly how much money you are going to get each month. You don’t have to worry about losing a job, or not getting a paycheck. Most of the time the money comes in on a predictable date and this is very advantageous because you know exactly when the money is going to get replenished.

Now to the budgeting. Most seniors have essentials such as paying for medications, food, rent and mortgage, transportation and of course incidentals. Figure out how much you have available after your rent/mortgage expense, medication expense, transportation expense and this is the amount you have for food and incidentals. Going out to eat can be a major expense so staying in might be a good idea for some.
Additionally, if you have money left over at the end of the month, you can save up for a vacation, or a one off purchase.

If you have debt, negotiating the interest rate with the bank or credit card company can save a lot of money. Monitoring utility usage and minimizing utility usage can also lead to a big savings. Leaving on the air conditioning or heat during the day when you aren’t home tends to add up over time. Even though this may amount to 50-100.00 per month, over the course of the year this equates to thousands of dollars.

It’s also worth mentioning that not all insurance premiums are created equal. Some people are unknowingly paying for services outside of Medicare that they may not need. Likewise, for those on an extremely reduced fixed income, it could be worth looking into Medicaid in your state. Each state has different rules, but here is a nationwide guide to Medicaid, which can help pay for regular medical expenses and long term care.

The last piece of advice is to track your not-so-necessary purchases. Write down each time you purchase something that is not essential and you will most likely be surprised. If you are not careful, a large amount of your budget could be going to non-essentials. Whether you use a pen and paper, or are using budgeting software, it is a good idea to keep track of all expenses. Click the lick to see a handy budget sheet created by AARP. This minimizes surprises and will lead to a much easier time getting to the next month’s income check.

Jacob Edward is the manager of Senior Planning in Phoenix Arizona. Jacob founded Senior Planning in 2007 and has helped many Arizona seniors and their families navigate the process of long-term care planning.

By |2022-10-26T10:18:53-05:00November 13th, 2022|Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog, News Posts|Comments Off on Guest Blog: Budgeting for Seniors and Those on Fixed Incomes

8 Fun Activities for Seniors with Mobility Issues

Do mobility issues have your aging parent down in the dumps? Losing the ability to get around independently can definitely strike a blow to confidence and wellbeing levels. Mobility issues don’t need to stifle a senior’s sense of purpose or enjoyment of life though. Don’t miss these 8 fun activity ideas for seniors with mobility issues:

Board games – bring on the board games and give your loved one a cognitive boost. Everything from cards to Scrabble to Monopoly, Dominos, and Checkers is a great place to start. Stock up on gently used board games from local re-stores like Goodwill and invite friends and family to join in on the fun.

Puzzles – putting puzzles together stimulates critical thinking and problem-solving skills as well as engages spatial awareness and concentration. Don’t reserve your fun to jigsaw puzzles either; games like Sudoku and Jenga have similar brain-boosting effects too!

Cooking – maybe standing at the stove to stir a big pot isn’t feasible, but mixing a green salad at a lower table is. Or helping scoop cookie dough onto a baking sheet. Cooking with your aging parent not only gives them something fun to do but helps them feel like a productive contributor in the home too.

Chair exercises – routine workouts are critical for all older adults, even people who are limited to canes, walkers or wheelchairs. Physical fitness helps prevent unwanted weight gain and lifestyle diseases like diabetes and heart disease. Guides to chair exercises and exercises for those recovering from injuries like fractured hips can be found online.

Art project – get the creative juices flowing and find an art project geared towards your loved one’s interests. Perhaps it is painting on a canvas, collaging, knitting, coloring, making jewelry, or even simply framing family photos – the act of creating something can is truly invigorating.

Planting – potting plants is easy and accessible when your loved one can sit in a chair at a table. Mixing soil, placing plants inside pots, and even snipping dead leaves or picking herbs are monthly activities that your loved one can do with minor assistance.

Reading – Nothing beats a good book. If your loved one is unable to hold a book or see words on a page, audiobooks are a great alternative (and can be borrowed for free at your local library).

Video chatting – for seniors with mobility limitations, social isolation is a very prevalent and dangerous reality. Technology makes it easy, however, to connect with friends and family near and far via free services like Skype, Google Hangouts or Facetime. You simply need a smartphone or webcam with speakers for your computer.

By |2022-09-29T15:17:19-05:00October 19th, 2022|Dr. Mauk's Boomer Blog, News Posts|Comments Off on 8 Fun Activities for Seniors with Mobility Issues