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12 Thoughtful Gifts for Senior Living Residents

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The holidays are a time for family, celebration, and giving. Many senior living residents have a family member or friend spending time with them this holiday season. However, sometimes the hardest part of the holidays is thinking of thoughtful gifts for senior living residents. That’s why I compiled some unique gift ideas, perfect for any resident in your life.

If you want to impact senior living residents this holiday season, think about whether they would appreciate a gift that is useful or one that is more sentimental. If they are alone this holiday season, they may appreciate personal gifts that keep them occupied and their mind off of their loneliness. If they are with family, thoughtful gifts that help them enjoy each other’s company are ideal.

#1 Vibrating alarm clock

Some seniors may need help getting up in the morning. A vibrating alarm clock helps those who have hearing loss or just don’t hear as well as they used to. The clock has a backup system attached to the bed that jolts the sleeper awake with a gentle vibration.

#2 House plants

Studies show that simply adding greenery to our surroundings can be good for our health and happiness. Bringing indoor plants into senior living centres is a great way to bring nature to those who may not have easy access to it.

#3 Netflix for senior living residents

Senior Living is a streaming video service for people who live in senior living communities, such as https://vivanteliving.com/. It offers TV shows, movies, music, and more; you sign up, connect your cable box, and watch the movies and shows on your tablet or smartphone. There’s no charge for residents because it’s paid for through member fees.

#4 Dental hygiene

A big part of taking care of your loved ones at home is ensuring that their dental hygiene improves. Seniors are more vulnerable to cavities, gum disease, and other dental problems. A simple way to encourage better dental hygiene is to invest in a Sonicare electric toothbrush or water flosser.

#5 Box of chocolates

Nancy Scott, founder of Vivante Living, says much of the time when she visits a resident in a senior living community, the resident’s family brings a box of chocolates. She says: ‘There’s nothing wrong with this unless you happen to be a diabetic or a resident who is a chocoholic or doesn’t eat sweets. It could be a hit-and-miss proposition if the family isn’t paying attention to your likes and dislikes.’

#6 Handmade gift

It sounds so simple, but it’s the gesture that counts. Using the provided materials, a resident can get creative and transform a simple box into a beautiful gift. Not only does this take time and thought, but it also lets the resident feel productive and useful.

#7 Goodies in a jar

Goodies in a Jar is one of the most thoughtful gifts you can give the senior living residents in your life. The jar comes packed with goodies, but it also comes with instructions. The instructions are for anyone who wants to share their goodies with the recipient. We all have that friend or family member that has everything they need. They are the perfect person to gift goodies in a Jar to because they will enjoy receiving something so thoughtful.

Here are some of the things included in goodies in a jar: nut bars, trail mix, fruit snacks, popcorn chips, peanuts, vegetable sticks, yogurt shakes, cheese crackers, fruit flavoured snacks, granola bars, and pretzels.

These are just some of the goodies you could send. The jar itself can be decorated with anything that reminds you of the senior living resident receiving the jar. Decorate the outside with pictures from when you were kids, pictures of your children together, and pictures of trips you have taken together. Then include a letter to the recipient telling them about all of your happy memories and how much they mean to you. You can also include a note to anyone sharing their goodies with the recipient, so they know exactly what to share and how quickly.

 #8 Amazon gift cards

Who doesn’t love Amazon gift cards? Amazon gift cards make shopping for baby boomers and senior living residents easy. Amazon gift cards let you buy what you want, when you want, without worrying about returning it or having to bring it back to the store. Amazon carries items for baby boomers and senior living residents of all varieties, so you can shop for something your senior living resident is sure to love.

Overall, Amazon gift cards are a great gift for senior living residents because they can be used at Amazon.com, so you can find exactly what you are looking for with no hassles. 

#9 Something to wear

 Give a scarf. Scarves are a great way to keep warm in winter and can be used as a blanket for those who want extra warmth without the bulk. Scarves come in a vast array of colours and patterns, making them a great way for residents to recapture memories from their younger years, as well as an opportunity for you to bring some pop into their lives.

#10 Bath bombs

Taking care of your senior living residents doesn’t always mean dressing them, feeding them, and taking them to appointments. Please take a moment to consider how you can make their lives more enjoyable and comforted. There are plenty of ways to show your seniors that you care, and bath bombs are one of the best ways to do that. My favourite thing to do with bath bombs takes a cup and fill it halfway with water and then drop a bath bomb in it. As it fizzes, I enjoy the scents and let the water warm up. Once the water is warm, I pour it into my bath. After my bath is done, I feel relaxed and rejuvenated, allowing me to spend more energy with my loved ones for the day.

#11 Something to read

Give a book. A new book is a perfect way to remind residents of their younger years and help them pass the time during those long, boring days of doing nothing.

Finally, the perfect gift for the senior citizen who has everything is a genuine idea that you thought of yourself. In a tribute to the past, buy a classic book from the residents’ younger days.

#12 Shiatsu foot massager

When someone enters a senior living facility, it’s not just their life that changes; it’s their lifestyle as well. A person might have a job that they spent decades working at, and now they might not have an opportunity for a long soak in a warm bath. Shiatsu massagers are a nice way to give someone the gift of self-care. It still involves those relaxing foot massages without taking too much time from their day.


Alicia Saville did her degree in psychology at the University of Edinburgh. She is interested in mental health and well-being.

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