It's entering prime cold and flu season. While it's impossible to avoid every contagious person without becoming a recluse, there are ways to help your parents prepare for these viruses. Cold and flu prevention starts at home.
Eat a Healthy Diet
A senior's diet should focus on lean proteins like fish, vegetables, fruit, and whole grains. During cold and flu season, they should make sure to get plenty of antioxidants. Leafy green vegetables and berries are a good start.
Hydration is also important. Make sure your mom or dad drinks plenty of water each day. If they can't remember if they've had enough to drink, there are water bottles that give an audible or visual warning when they haven't had any water in a while.
Your parents need to wash hands in hot soapy water. If they're not near a sink, they should at least use a hand sanitizer until they can get to a sink.
Hands are not the only thing to sanitize. Door knobs and levers, buttons/keypads on computers, remotes, and phones should be wiped down as well. You should also wash sheets and towels in hot water and bleach when the contagious period ends.
Counters, stovetops, and the outside of appliances are other items that should be sanitized regularly. If your parents touch an item while cooking, it needs to be sanitized.
Go for a Walk
Light exercise is actually helpful at boosting immunities. Your parent doesn't want to do anything strenuous. A slow walk around the neighborhood gets them out of the germ-filled house and also gets them a little exercise in the process. Make sure your mom or dad walks only enough that they stretch out and get fresh air. The goal is not to walk so far that your parent becomes overly tired.
When You're Sick, Stay Home
If your parent does develop a cold or flu, they need to listen to their body and rest as much as possible. They need to stay home and not go out and spread the virus to others. They also need to avoid other germs while their body is busy fighting the cold or flu they currently have.
Your mom or dad may worry about things not getting done. Talk to them about temporary home care services. While they recover, a caregiver can do the cooking and cleaning and run loads of laundry. Call a home care agency for pricing and an exact list of possible services.
If you or an aging loved one are considering homecare in Holt, MI, please contact the caring staff at Seniors Helping Seniors of Lansing. Call today: 517-332-9953.