Senior Safety: I Got the COVID-19 Vaccine – Now What?
COVID-19 vaccinations continue to roll out across the United States as all adults are now eligible. Since seniors were some of the first to receive the vaccine, many are now fully vaccinated. With this added layer of protection against severe disease, older adults may be wondering what that means for socializing and getting back to some of their favorite activities.
It is important to note that being vaccinated does not guarantee 100% protection against COVID-19; however, the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines are up to 95% effective at preventing severe disease and minimizing symptoms. Seniors can still get sick, but the risk is much lower. Masks should still be worn when out in public places, especially indoors where ventilation may be poor. In addition, social distancing guidelines should continue to be followed in these situations as well.
So, what can fully vaccinated seniors do?
- You can visit with small groups of family or friends without masks if they have also been vaccinated.
- If you are visiting with people who have not been vaccinated, try to limit it to one household outside of your own at a time.
- You can begin traveling again without having to quarantine or get tested.
Many seniors have been isolated for months, so being able to spend time with and hug loved ones can provided a much-needed boost in mental health. Talk to your family and make sure that everyone is comfortable with the plans put in place. Some families may be fine with being in close quarters inside while others prefer to socialize outdoors.
Some senior centers and other organizations are starting to host various activities again. They may have limited spots open, but you can get back to enjoying book clubs, art classes, exercise groups, and other social gatherings. Be sure to follow the safety protocols they have in place regarding masks and social distancing.
You may decide to form your own “pod” of friends that you meet with each week because everyone takes similar safety precautions. You can plan different trips and activities that you want to do together. This can help you slowly ease back into to society and increase socialization.
Adjusting to a New Normal
There are still a lot of unknowns when it comes to COVID-19 and whether vaccinated individuals are able to spread the virus to others. Although you can enjoy more relaxed guidelines, you should continue to pay attention to recommendations from the CDC. It is better to err on the side of being overly cautious.
Remember to do what makes you feel most comfortable. It is your choice who you choose to socialize with or where you choose to go. But now that you are fully vaccinated, you may feel a little safer getting together with loved ones and doing more activities that you enjoy.
You can also feel confident having an in-home caregiver spend more time with you to ensure your needs are being met as you age in place. It is a good time to re-evaluate the level of service you are receiving and see if any changes need to be made. You can also coordinate some errands or trips outside the home together. Contact Always Best Care at (855) 470-2273 to learn more about in-home care and schedule a free consultation.