While the pandemic has kept many families apart this year, technology has made it much easier to stay connected during self-isolation. As aging adults and seniors are more at-risk for COVID-19, it’s beneficial to embrace technology that allows families to come together online through video calls. Along with using tech to stay in touch, you can also find online activities to keep you engaged, busy, and healthy at Maria's Place.
Taking advantage of technology
One of the most challenging aspects of the pandemic has been the forced isolation. Those who live alone or who are considered at-risk have it particularly hard, which is why it’s vital to find ways to connect with friends and family online. There are plenty of great ways to stay connected with loved ones using technology, whether it’s through regular video calls, text messages, or playing games online.
Video chatting has been a major benefit to those who are isolating at home. Almost every online messaging platform now has a video chat option, making it easier than ever to have a video call with friends and family. Some of the popular options are Zoom, Skype, Facebook Messenger, and WhatsApp. Many smartphones make it easy to video chat with front-facing cameras, but if you don’t have a smartphone, you can video chat through your computer using your laptop’s camera or by getting a webcam.
While video chatting is a great way to “see” your family members, sometimes it’s easier to send messages instead. Take advantage of online messaging platforms to easily connect with your family and friends online. Regular messaging throughout the day will help you feel connected to your community, even if you can’t be in each other’s physical presence.
One fun way to stay connected is through playing games online. Many games are available through mobile apps or on computers, so do some research and find a game you can play with your loved ones for weekly game nights. Some fun options include trivia, crosswords, and even charades.
If you want to get active, consider doing a virtual workout with loved ones online. You can do this by video chatting while doing the same online yoga class, or you could do a group workout led by one of your friends or family members. Get creative and set weekly challenges for yourself to stay committed, and enjoy the social benefits of working out with others.
Digital safety considerations
Using technology is great for staying connected with loved ones, but it’s important to keep your information and devices safe while online.
Digital security is a complex topic these days, as hackers are getting more clever and finding ways to steal information across a number of platforms. One of the best ways to protect your information is by creating a secure network at home. When setting up your internet connection, pick a password that’s hard to guess, and install cybersecurity firewalls that can block malicious attempts to steal your personal data.
Unfortunately, older adults are more at risk of identity theft, which is why it’s vital to learn how to protect devices and personal information. One of the most important steps is keeping all your accounts and devices protected with strong passwords. You can also install security software on your devices which will be helpful for fending off cyberattacks.
The pandemic is making it very difficult to feel connected, but technology can help: video chatting, messaging, and even playing games or working out online can help you feel more connected to loved ones. However, be sure to brush up on your digital security knowledge to protect your information and devices.
Are you looking for fun games or activities to keep you busy? Browse Maria's Place for creative and brain-boosting activities for seniors.
Author: Libby Howell of Grandparent.info
Libby works continuously to uphold her title of “World’s Best Grandparent,” and spends quality time with each of her seven grandchildren in order to do so. She’s an experienced grandparent, and she wants to share her knowledge with others through her site.
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