No matter where you are in the holiday shopping process--whether you’ve been crossing gifts off your list since Black Friday, or have not yet started to shop--if you are caring for aging parents, investing in the gift of fall prevention at home can have a profound effect long after the holidays are over. For some, coming up with gift ideas for older parents can be challenging, especially if they insist that they do not need anything and to not bother getting them a gift.
These practical gift ideas for older parents will not only help with fall prevention at home, but they will also greatly improve their overall quality of life. Here are five great gift ideas for older parents for you to consider this holiday season:
Exercise is one of the best methods of prevention when it comes to senior falls. Exercise can help older adults maintain a healthy weight in order to avoid chronic health problems like cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes. It can also help to improve balance and bone strength, two elements that are vital to fall prevention at home.
Consider a yoga-based fitness DVD, which improves balance, flexibility, and range of motion, such as the Stronger Seniors Chair Yoga workout. And perhaps pair it with a muscle-building workout DVD, like this 4-pack of Jane Fonda fitness videos to help build strength and improve balance.
Since 55 percent of all fall injuries occur within the home, taking extra precautions to practice fall prevention at home can have a big impact. Some of these precautions can be big changes, such as adding grab bars near toilets and showers, and others can be small, such as wearing non-skid slippers around the house.
Not only are non-skid slippers practical for fall prevention at home, but they also serve a dual purpose of keeping feet warm during cold winter nights. Safer than socks, since you’re guaranteed not to fall on slippery hardwood or tile floors, non-skid slippers can help keep aging parents safe and warm at home. You can’t go wrong with this animal-emblazoned pair from LL Bean or these cozy Ugg slippers for men.
Winter Boots With Rubber Soles
Just like needing non-skid slippers at home, investing in a great pair of winter boots with sturdy, non-slip rubber bottoms, can literally be life-saving this winter. In addition to having a good grip on the sole, great winter boots should also be waterproof.
The Kamik Momentum Waterproof Boot from Paragon Sports is fur-lined, waterproof and has a synthetic rubber-grip sole to keep mom safe from harm this winter. If you’re shopping for dad, consider the North Face’s Chilkat III Mid-Lace-Up Waterproof Boot from Eastern Mountain Sports.
Medical Alert Device
Senior medical alert devices are a great gift for the holidays since many people are resistant to owning one until a fall or medical emergency has occurred. Seniors who experience a fall inside the home are more likely to get immediate help or medical attention if they own a medical alert device.
Medical Guardian is an affordable and reliable provider of senior medical alert devices, so you can also gift yourself peace of mind in knowing your parent will have access to help in an emergency situation. Senior medical alert devices are often overlooked when it comes to fall prevention at home, and while a medical alert device cannot stop a fall from happening, it can mitigate the damage once it has occurred.
IOU For Snow Shoveling
For older folks who have not yet downsized and still live in a home with a driveway or walkway that they are responsible for shoveling are put at risk every time it snows. Shoveling snow can take a major toll on the body--from injuring your lower back, to experiencing a heart attack from the physical stress--so, giving a loved one the gift of not having to think about that this holiday season is money well-spent.
One option is to arrange with a neighbor to shovel their driveway and walkway should it snow, and work out a payment plan with them. Or, you can do some research about a local company in your loved one’s neighborhood who you can pre-pay to take care of it for you. Either way, saving your parent the trouble of dealing with it is one of the best gifts ideas for older parents that you can give this season.