It's important to get your loved ones out and about regularly, but for many older people, a lot of public spaces can provide additional risks that they may not be equipped to handle.
Finding a suitable public space for older people can sometimes feel like a challenge, so make sure to consider destinations carefully.
Here we'll examine why going outside is important for your loved one and what features should be present in a suitable public space for older people.
Why is it good to get out regularly?
Staying socially active is essential, as living alone can put strain on a person's health. Whilst live-in care helps by having a constant presence within the home, getting outside provides additional benefits, such as the opportunity to spend time with friends and family.
Exercise is a major benefit of getting out and about. A change of scene can help to stimulate both the mind and body, therefore improving overall health.
A bit of sunshine and a breath of fresh air can lift your loved one's mood and provide a refreshing change of pace.
For those with difficulties moving around, visiting public spaces alone can be challenging. However, by helping your loved one spend time outside of the house, you can make sure they can still enjoy these trips well into their old age.
What to look for in a public space for older people
The specific features your loved one requires from a public space may vary depending on their needs. To help provide peace of mind, these are some of the most common features to look for when you're searching for a public space for older people to visit.
Level and non-slippery surfaces
Flat surfaces that provide good traction will significantly reduce your loved one's risk of falls, slips or trips.
Features such as railings and ramps will help those with mobility issues move around more easily, and will lend support if your loved one starts to tire.
Older people may need to visit the bathroom frequently or at short notice, so easily accessible bathroom facilities are an important feature to look out for in public spaces.
Seating and rest places
If it's a warm day, or the trip involves a lot of walking, make sure there are suitable places for your loved one to sit and rest when needed.
Visual and audio aids
Public spaces that require listening to or reading important information may be difficult for those with vision or hearing impairments. Look for destinations that will offer aids to those who need them.
Lifts or escalators
Stairs provide a much greater hazard for trips and falls than flat ground, so try to find places that have suitable routes for older people that include lifts and escalators.
With some careful planning, you'll find that there are lots of public spaces for older people to enjoy, and many benefits to be gained from visiting them.
Learn more about how The Good Care Group can help your loved one stay active and socially engaged.