As quarantine for COVID-19 continues, many people are wondering how much longer they can stand it. But there are ways that seniors, caregivers, and parents can help make the stay-at-home orders bearable for those that still need to stay home.
Excitement as States Reopen
The Governor of New Mexico recently announced that the state was lifting some restrictions that had been put in place for the stay-at-home orders. Most notably, as of May 27, 2020, restaurants are allowed to provide dine-in and patio service, retail stores are allowed to re-open for in-store browsing, and houses of worship can hold services in-person.
Of course, all of these reopening measures came with caveats, including ensuring that capacity is restricted to 50% or less. The new orders also put in place other measures like providing hand sanitizer and ensuring individuals wear masks when interacting to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Staying Home is Still Safer for High Risk Individuals
However, the revised stay-at-home orders still recommend that those who are at the highest risk of suffering bad outcomes from contracting the virus continue to avoid contact with people outside their immediate homes as much as possible. Staying at home is the best way to avoid contracting the virus or spreading it to others.
The high-risk population includes senior citizens, those with underlying health conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure, and anyone whose health may put them at greater risk. Guardians or conservators and other caretakers who live with or interact with at-risk individuals will also need to continue to try and minimize their contact with the outside world in order to avoid getting their loved ones sick. For these populations, the joy of going out and going “back to normal” looks like it is still a long way off.
How to Keep Life Enjoyable Through a Prolonged Quarantine
While staying at home for a longer quarantine period may sound like a challenge to many, there are ways to make life at home more enjoyable. There are a number of activities that can keep seniors, children, and other groups who may be staying home occupied.
A few ideas include:
- Making a virtual visit to a museum, bio park, or historical monument
- Picking up a new hobby like knitting or gardening
- Going for walks or hikes outside where there will not be crowds
- Trying guided meditation or yoga through online apps
- Schedule regular phone calls and video chats with loved ones across the country
There are a number of resources available online to help individuals and their caregivers find new ways to stay engaged during prolonged quarantine:
- Home Care Assistance, an organization that provides in-home care assistance for seniors and their families, has put together a free Life Enrichment Guide for seniors and their caretakers.
- Parents.com has compiled guidelines for parents to create a schedule for their children during quarantine to keep everyone safe and sane.
- The Los Angeles Times created a list of 100 online activities to keep people occupied during stay-at-home orders.
Although staying home can be difficult for people, it truly is the best way to reduce the transmission of COVID-19, especially for high-risk individuals. Even as states reopen, we can find new ways to keep those we love safe.