(Caregiver with senior at eye doctor | Photo courtesy of Home Instead)
Imagine what it would be like to no longer see well enough to drive a car — or, to hear what your loved one was saying from across the room. How would you feel if you lost the ability to taste your favorite meal or smell a summer barbeque?
According to local aging experts, these experiences are the daily reality for 83 percent of older adults living with sensory loss in the United States. While those with sensory loss have always faced an increased risk of feeling isolated, the pandemic has further reduced their ability to fully connect with the world around them, leading to a diminished quality of life.
The support and empathy of the local community can significantly improve a senior’s ability to continue living an active, fulfilling life. To help others better understand the unique challenges of sensory loss, Home Instead in Bend plans to host virtual workshops to talk about the challenges of sensory loss, as well as tips to live safely. There are also free resources and tools, including an online sensory loss simulation and instructions on how to create an DYI Aging Senses Kit to experience these effects firsthand.