How to care for your parents when you can’t be there

If you’re not living in the same vicinity as your parents, it can be difficult to show your support and love for them from a distance. As we know, social isolation has numerous negative physical and mental effects on seniors. Here are a few ideas on how you can be there for them, even when you’re apart.
1. Get online
Technology has come a long way. Now you can connect with your parents through video chats on mobile phones, tablets and laptops. Zoom, Skype, Google Meet, WhatsApp and Microsoft Teams are all great platforms for face-to-face interaction. Set up a group call with all your family members wherever they are, and get your kids on screen to read stories and play games. Make sure to check in every day, even if it’s just a WhatsApp message or quick phone call. Every connection goes a long way.
2. Go postal
While technology is certainly a convenient way to keep connected, adding a more personal touch is a great way to show how much you care. There’s nothing like receiving a handwritten letter to make you feel special. Put down the smart devices and write a letter to send to your parents by mail. It might take a bit longer to get there but the excitement of having a letter delivered is sure to brighten their day. Consider including a photo or a spritz of their favourite scent to jog their memories and make it a more engaging experience.
3. Send some love
For something really special, put together a care package of some of your parent’s favourite things. You can include anything from delicious snacks, interesting magazines, engaging crosswords, a new dressing gown or luxury bath products to name a few. If they really love to read, consider investing in an audiobook subscription. You can order it all online on a number of websites (such as Netflorist, Takealot, Loot and many more), and have it delivered to your loved one’s place of residence.

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Isolation is harmful to your elderly loved one’s emotional and mental wellbeing. It’s essential that they still feel loved and like part of the family, even when they are alone. Here are some tips on how to stay connected.