Imagine being confined to one or two rooms, with few visitors. Sound like a recipe for loneliness? It is. Yet, even though we realize the reality of life for shut-ins, we often overlook opportunities to brighten their lives. February 11th is National Shut-In Visitation Day. Can you take a few moments from your day to visit someone who is homebound or stuck in a nursing home?
When Is Someone Considered To Be A Shut-In?
A person is considered to be a shut-in when they don’t leave their home or nursing home. Usually, they’re homebound because of physical or mental disabilities.
How Can I Help A Shut-In?
Sometimes Just A Visit & A Smile Really Help. Here Are Some Other Things You Can Do During Your Visit:
- Respect their privacy. Dignify them by respecting their personal belongings and space.
- Try to see things from their perspective.
- Ask if they’d like to go for a drive. If they are physically able, a short drive through the neighborhood might lift their spirits.
- Take something you know they can use or would enjoy. If you know they love word games, take a book of crossword puzzles, large print if necessary.
- Listen to their stories, even if you’ve heard them a million times before. Obviously, the stories mean something and they care enough to share them with you.
- Give them a light hug or pat on the back.
Ways You Can Help Year Round
Once You See How Much Your Visit Means, You’ll Probably Want To Do More:
- Put a standing, recurring appointment on your calendar to visit your shut-in.
- Contact other friends, family members, churches and see who can visit your homebound friend.
- Medicare covers some medical social service and medical supplies for homebound persons.
It’s too easy to just put off visiting someone who is homebound. Our lives are busy, and even important people can slip through the cracks. Visit the shut-ins in your life. Your simple gesture and offering of a few minutes of your time can make a huge difference.
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