Staying Active and Community Opportunities
Dr. Ciani says the most important thing for older adults is to take care of themselves:
- Stay active.
- Keep your mind and body active by turning to interests you had before the pandemic.
- Add stretching, walking, meditating and taking deep breaths to your daily routine.
- Avoid alcohol.
- Allow your mind to rest and take breaks from tuning into the news and social media, as this can often be a trigger for stress and anxiety.
One question she hears frequently from her patients is, “Is it safe to go outside for a walk?” There is no reason older adults cannot go outside for a walk. Take simple precautions to keep yourself safe: plan ahead, stay six feet away from those around you, bring water and avoid the use of public restrooms.
Other means to stay active while sheltering in place include staying connected with friends and loved ones, volunteering and experiencing the local arts. Consider writing letters to friends and family, letting them know you are thinking about them and sharing in this experience. Reflect on your experiences by writing in a journal, which can be shared with your family as your own piece of history.
Volunteering is another way to stay connected with your community. Cincinnati Cares is a volunteer organization that coordinates volunteer experiences which can be done at home, such as sewing masks or making art for those in the community.
Cincinnati ArtsWave has partnered with local organizations to compose virtual exhibits called Mindful Music Moments. Starting in June 2020, the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County will be offering curbside pickup. The library is also offering “virtual events” on their website to stay connected with the arts and community.