Daily life for a senior is filled with stressors. As they struggle with cognitive decline, decreased physical mobility, and loss of independence, life becomes filled with things that cannot be controlled. The unknown and unpredictable becomes stressful, even scary. With a predictable daily schedule or routine, life becomes much more manageable for both seniors and their caregivers.
What is a Daily Routine?
A routine provides the predictable sequence of events that happen day after day. It is the structure that sets a natural flow for the day. Activities, such as wake up, personal care, meal times, activity times, rest time, household chores, and bed time are done around the same time each day.
Why do Seniors need a Daily Routine?
The structure of a routine provides an outline for the day so every knows what to expect. As seniors begin to lose independence, there is anxiety with relying on others. Stress is reduced when seniors know what they will do next and they do not need to think about or question when their needs will be met. A daily schedule takes the pressure off the caregiver and provides the reassurance seniors need.
Benefits of a Routine
The greatest benefit that comes from a set schedule is the safety and security it provides for an aging senior. Seniors with Alzheimer’s and other cognitive issues rely on a routine to help them remember activities that are vital to their well-being. When there is a logical, familiar schedule in place, seniors get the support they need to ensure they are remembering essential daily activities such as taking medications, eating regularly, bathing, daily hygiene, and staying physically active. Routines also help seniors keep a regular bedtime which improves quality of sleep.
A consistent schedule is beneficial to both you and your senior loved one. Keep your schedule flexible enough to allow for spontaneous activities or special events. Don’t be too rigid by over planning and allow for plenty of downtime. Don’t be afraid to change things up if you see the routine you have in place isn’t working or isn’t well balanced.
A daily routine can bring peace and predictability, which is essential to your senior loved one’s overall health and well-being. To learn more read our blog “4 Ways a Daily Schedule can Reduce Stress for Caregivers”. https://goo.gl/pm8t8g
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