Gift Ideas for Seniors

December 13, 2013

in Lifestyle

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Exchanging gifts has become synonymous with the holiday season. Family members exchange gifts with one another, men and women trade gifts and greeting cards with their coworkers and students participate in grab bag gift exchanges in the classroom.

Giving gifts is such a big part of the holiday season that shoppers may run out of gift ideas before they have crossed everyone off their lists. For example, it might not be easy to find the perfect gift for the senior citizen on your holiday shopping list. Seniors might not be up-to-date on the latest gadgets or might have downgraded from a home to a more manageable living arrangement, so knickknacks or decorative items for the home may not be too practical, either. The following are a few tips for gifting seniors this holiday season.

* Warm things up. As men and women age, many develop medical conditions that require medication. Medications like blood thinners can make seniors feel the cold more than others, so a gift that can keep seniors warm through the winter can make a great gift. A thick wool sweater or a fleece blanket is both practical and thoughtful.

* Open a senior’s eyes to e-readers. Many seniors find that maintaining a household is simply too much work once all the kids have grown up and moved out. As a result, many move from private homes into apartment complexes geared to the senior set or even into assisted living facilities that make it easier to deal with the daily demands of life. When seniors make such a move, they sacrifice space for convenience. Personal libraries may no longer be possible or practical, but an e-reader such as Amazon’s Kindle or the Nook(R) from Barnes and Noble allows seniors to store their favorite books in one small and convenient place.

* Give the lap of luxury. Many seniors are on fixed incomes, which greatly limit how much disposable income they have to treat themselves to something nice. But seniors still love a trip to the spa or a round of golf just as much as their younger counterparts. Savvy shoppers know that deals can be had on such luxuries, and it just takes a little patience and research. Sign up for a service like GrouponTM to gain access to exclusive discount offers to a variety of luxury offerings, including spa treatments, cruise vacations and rounds of golf. Signing up is free and easy, and you might just find a deal that makes a senior’s holiday season.

* Go healthy. Many men and women embrace a healthier lifestyle as they age. Seniors who might have been too busy raising a family to focus on their own health are typically encouraged by their physicians to exercise and embrace healthier eating habits. Gift-givers can help seniors on their quests to become healthier by buying them a membership to a local fitness club, many of which provide classes designed specifically for seniors. Fitness clubs typically offer discounted memberships to seniors, who might even be eligible for rebates from their health insurance providers if they meet established attendance requirements. Seniors who suffer from arthritis might benefit from a membership at a nearby yoga center.

* Give the gift of communication. Sometimes the best gift is the simplest gift. Seniors love to speak with their children and grandchildren, so why not give the gift of communication? If you haven’t already, alter your cellular phone plan to a family plan that gives seniors unlimited minutes when calling family members so they can speak to their grandkids as often as possible. You can even go the extra mile and upgrade a senior’s computer so he or she has access to instant messaging and videoconferencing services such SkypeTM, allowing seniors to see just how fast their grandchildren are growing even if those youngsters are on the other side of the country.

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Lindsey Renuard is a blogger, YouTube beauty expert, and the Managing Editor of the Skiatook Journal.

{ 1 comment }

caregiver December 23, 2013 at 1:33 am

As people grow old, many of them lose enthusiasm about celebrating holidays. If possible, we should keep our elders engaged into activities to the appropriate extent, so they feel involved and cared about, but not to the point that it becomes overwhelming.

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