Providing care home residents with a full activities programme to enjoy on a daily basis is extremely important, especially when striving to provide them with the best quality of life possible. As we age, our immune system becomes slower to respond, making older people more susceptible to illnesses and health conditions. It also means that existing health conditions could worsen or side effects could increase. Providing residents with a varied activities programme enables people to focus on improving their physical and mental health as well as their social skills in order to meet overall well-being.
There are numerous benefits to both mental and physical activities for elderly people. It is recommended that elderly people partake in 2.5 hours of moderate aerobic exercise every week or 1 hour 15 minutes of vigorous exercise each week. Incorporating these types of physical activities into an activities programme helps residents to stay healthy and enjoy an active lifestyle. Other common benefits include an increase in mood, reduced loneliness, memory recall as well as simply trying out new things to discover new hobbies.
Organising activities can be challenging, however, there is a plethora of ideas to include once you have established the basics. If you are struggling to think of care home activity ideas to include in your schedule, we have created a list of the most popular activities in our opinion, for you to integrate within your care home.
Board Games and Puzzles
The first type of activity that never disappoints is games and puzzles. Common examples include noughts and crosses, dominoes, chess, scrabble, card games, ring toss and jigsaw puzzles. Not only is it a way to bring people together and have fun within a communal setting, it also has numerous benefits. Playing board games or completing puzzles can increase dexterity, fine motor skills, cognitive thinking, and memory recall which is especially beneficial for residents with conditions such as Dementia or Parkinsons.
An activity to treat residents to is live entertainment in the form of music or dance. Bringing in tribute acts/groups or taking residents out to watch others in the community will be thoroughly enjoyed by people of all interests and abilities. This environment encourages residents to sing and dance alongside the live music which elevates their mood. It is a brilliant way to make new friends through social interaction or spend time with current family and friends. Singing and dancing can also enhance reminiscence and trigger memories, as residents will remember times in their youth; sparking positive emotions.
Quizzes or Bingo
One of the most popular group activities within a care home are quizzes or bingo. You could put your own twist on these activities to make them even more engaging, one example of this is playing musical bingo. By bringing everybody together can create some friendly competition between residents, as well as creating new bonds with other people within the home or the local community. By getting everybody together for a quiz or bingo night will enhance morale within the home. You could even ask for feedback on what rounds were difficult or not as difficult so that you tailor the quizzes to your residents for future sessions.
It is common to have a group of green-fingered residents within a care home, so it’s important to put their skills to good use in your outdoor area or garden. A trip out to the local gardening centre to buy an assortment of plants and flowers, then taking the time to plant them and watch them bloom allows residents to take pride in the end result and feel a sense of achievement. Gardening also has numerous health benefits including strengthened joints and muscles and better balance reducing falls or slips. Gardening also reduces the risk of heart disease and stroke due to the calming atmosphere it provides.
A recommended activity that would be beneficial to introduce within your activities schedule are sensory classes. Some examples of what this could entail hand massages, blindfolded tasting competitions, moulting dough with essential oils or a lucky dip, knitting and finger paint. Some benefits of sensory activities include better concentration, increased motor neuron functions, a more relaxed state of mind and a boosted mood. Sensory activities are particularly great for those with certain health conditions such as Dementia or sensory impairments.
Arts & Crafts
Arts & Crafts is a broad activity, meaning you can create each session based on your residents’ needs and interests. This is often a popular activity within care homes as residents can use their creativity and imagination to create something unique alone or with the help of staff. It also is a brilliant way to socialise whilst carrying out an arts & crafts session, with residents being able to have direction if it is needed or make use of their own creativeness if they would rather. Common benefits include increased concentration, always having new tasks to try and reminiscence. Even if a resident is not participating, they have the opportunity to think back on crafts they made in their youth, whilst socialising with other residents.
Exercising is a vital part of staying healthy as we grow older. Good examples of ways to include light exercise sessions in your activities programme could be with Tai Chi, pilates, guided meditations or walks and jogs- Science direct shows that 14% of older adults deem walking or jogging as their favourite activity and it’s the perfect excuse to get out and about and explore your local area. Besides the obvious health benefits that exercise and fresh air provides, older people can also reap the rewards from its mood boost, the increase in balance and strength and the improvement of cognitive functions. Exercise is supportive of different abilities, so everybody can take the class at their own pace and still enjoy it.
Our Activities Programme at Westerton
Here at Westerton Care Home, we offer a brilliant activities programme for our residents to get involved in on a regular basis. Some of these include trips out of the home, live entertainment, pet therapy, arts and crafts, baking and decorating and so many more. Our activities coordinator and team work closely with our residents to ensure we are providing them with the best options possible. We also plan regular seasonal events for our residents, meaning they are given numerous opportunities to meet new people and live a full and meaningful life.
Receive Tailored Person-Centred Care at Westerton
Westerton Care Home is a luxury care home situated in Bearsden, Glasgow that offers the highest quality Residential Care, Dementia Care, Respite Care and Nursing Care services.
As well as our activities programme, we have a wide range of facilities for residents to utilise daily such as a hair salon & treatment room, cinema room, relaxation areas and more. We offer an all inclusive care package which means all activities, events and excursions are included in our fees, helping to support residents in living a enriched and varied lifestyle.
If you are interested in getting more information about Westerton and the care options we have to offer please get in contact with us. You can reach us on 0141 942 5834 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and a member of our friendly team will be delighted to assist you.