The Importance of Keeping Homebound Seniors Active, Body, Mind and Soul – Oakland & Piedmont

Oakland and Piedmont Area

The worries of a caregiver responsible for someone in homecare can feel truly overwhelming. It’s easy to get stuck in a routine and become bogged down by necessities like medical care, meals, and meeting other daily needs for your parent or spouse. It is only natural to worry about money, scheduling, and the overall health and comfort of a person in homecare, but there are some things you can do to alleviate some of your own anxiety, as well as to improve the quality of life of everyone involved.

Let us not forget that, not only do you, as a caregiver, need to venture away from the home, but so does the person you’re caring for. A change of scene, a meal out, and regular visits to a senior center or other facility that provides active and supportive recreation and exercise are all vital parts of care management that are too often forgotten. A variety of recent studies have shown that patients with Alzheimer’s and other dementia display improved and less frequent symptoms with a regular regimen of activity and exercise to keep the mind and body moving. Physical frailty and muscle atrophy are serious concerns that can be easily addressed through a few simple steps. If you’re unaware of the resources and services available to people in home care and their caregivers in Oakland and Piedmont, knowing what’s out there can change your life, and the life of your loved one, for the better.

When it comes to getting out and about as a caregiver in the Oakland or Piedmont area, you may feel limited if the person in homecare is wheelchair-bound or is mobile but doesn’t get around as well as he or she once did. You may feel that a hearing deficit or a general decline in faculties might make it challenging to move about in the world with your loved one as you’d like. But there are more resources and services available to help you both than you might believe. Do you want to take your mother to the movies? Out to dinner? Or find a gentle exercise class to help develop her balance and keep her muscles, bones, and joints in optimal condition? All this is available right in the Oakland and Piedmont area for people in homecare.

One of the best supportive resources for people in homecare in Oakland and Piedmont is the City of Oakland Department of Human Services, found here.

This link guides you to six Senior Centers in North, East, and West Oakland that offer a full range of services, from classes to nutritional counseling to exercise groups to blood pressure and bone density screening. Low cost hot lunch is available daily, as well as cards and other games, crafting, language classes and much more. And if you’re worrying about how to transport your spouse or parent to these physical locations, this same website provides a surprising scope of transportation service options, from Van Vouchers and Taxi Scrips to Senior Shuttle and Paratransit, for daily excursions, shopping, medical appointments, or wherever you need to go.

Social interaction and stimulation is one proven way of keeping the mind sharp. Too often people in homecare stay bound by the four walls of their living space, going out only to medical appointments. Taking a person in homecare to a senior center for exercise and companionship is a good start. Arranging visits in the home is also a great way to break up daily routine and offer a sense of variety and social activity. Yet getting out in the world for “normal” and familiar activities is also vital.

For you as a caregiver, ordinary outings such as going for a bite to eat with your parent or spouse might seem like more trouble than it’s worth. And while this type of endeavor may seem complicated when you consider the details, it doesn’t have to be difficult. Taking advantage of the above resources for safe, easy, and inexpensive transportation is step one. Step two is realizing that you and the person in your care, regardless of his or her physical, mental, or emotional condition, need and deserve to continue to interact with the world at large.

So where can you go? Choosing a restaurant that is close to home, if you’re venturing out for the first time, might make you feel more secure. And if you’re familiar with the tastes of your loved one, try selecting a place that will offer menu choices that will make your relative feel comforted and at home. Even if the person in your care is wheelchair-bound you’ll find no shortage of accommodating places to dine here. Accessible where you can choose from a list of 341 restaurants in the Oakland and Piedmont area with wheelchair access including reviews, menu descriptions, price ranges, addresses and all contact information.

Even taking in a film is possible. Did you know that in the Oakland and Piedmont area there are multiple movie theaters that offer wheelchair access as well as listening devices for people with hearing loss? Find showtimes and ticketing information here. Reserving your tickets ahead of time for your selected showing is just one more way to simplify the experience and make it easier or more enjoyable.

If leaving home just isn’t an option, on any particular day, or always, you can still avail yourself of a rare and wonderful service available in Northern California. Senior Center Without Walls offers a seemingly endless variety of group activities, discussions, and brain quizzes to help keep mental function at its best, and all of this is provided over the phone by toll-free conference call, like the party lines of days past. Participate with your relative in homecare, or take the much-needed break that all caregivers so deserve.

Despite the very real challenges of day-to-day living as a caregiver for someone in homecare, it is important to remember that you are not alone. Though you may feel isolated or overwhelmed, in fact you are surrounded by supportive services and resources in Oakland and Piedmont that can make a world of difference to you and your parent or spouse in homecare. You can still enjoy a fun and fulfilling life experience, and provide the same for someone you love.

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