21 activities for bedridden fun things to do (2023)

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Updated October 12, 2022– Whether it's a temporary situation or a more permanent one, if one of your family members is bedridden, you probably don't want to address their limited mobility. I'm sure you'd rather spend quality time connecting and making memories together.

What activities can bedridden people enjoy?

Here are some recommended activities for those who are bedridden:

  • Read together (or listen to audio books)
  • Join the online book club
  • have a tea party
  • play games
  • work on puzzles
  • hand work
  • Try some Lego projects
  • Watching TV or movies, especially old ones.
  • Compile and view photo albums.
  • Design an entire themed day with room decorations.
  • listen to music together
  • learn a new language
  • Video chat with others
  • virtual trips

Althoughbe bedriddenIt's hard, your loved one doesn't have to languish. The activity ideas we have listed above can be a great opportunity to enrichbedridden life.

Plus, with the extra social stimulation it does for you, they'll want to have fun every time you're together!


What can you do if you are bedridden?

People assume that there's almost nothing you can do when you're in bed (or even bed rest). while youPhysical activity is restrictedIf you're stuck in bed, there are still plenty of fun activities to share together.

Here is a long list of options for bedridden seniors.

1) Read a good book together or listen to audiobooks

Everyone has a long list of books they want to read. Being in bed is an opportunity to catch up on all the books you never had time for.

Reading is a great way for a bedridden person to explore other worlds outside their own. They can also temporarily forget their circumstances as they meddle in the lives of others.

If your loved one can see well and hold a book, you can take turns reading passages to each other.

For those who have difficulty reading, audiobooks are a great alternative. You can hear a passionate reader narrate the book from beginning to end.

You can also find (or start) an online book club. Much has gone virtual since the pandemic, and book clubs are no exception. Just search online or go to Facebook to find one.

2) Join an online book club

You probably didn't know that online book clubs existed! My sister is among 3 of them.

If you enjoy reading and discovering new books, then joining a book club is perfect for you. And being bedridden shouldn't stop you from participating.

There are many online book clubs that you can join, no matter where you are located. All you need is a computer and an internet connection.

Some of the benefits of joining an online book club are:

  • Find new books to read: Online book club members share recommendations, so you're sure to find some new titles you'll love.
  • Connect with other book lovers: By joining an online book club, you can discuss books with like-minded people from around the world. This is a great way to make friends and connect with people who share your interests.
  • You never have to leave the house: One of the great things about online book clubs is that you can participate from the comfort of your own home. So if you're bedridden or can't leave the house, you can still enjoy all the benefits of a book club.

If you are interested in joining an online book club, remember a few things. First, make sure you choose a club that's right for you. There are clubs for all types of readers, so finding one that suits your interests shouldn't be too difficult.

Click here for a list of online book clubs.

Second, prepare to be active in the club. Most online book clubs require members to read a certain number of books each month and post regularly to the club's discussion forums.

If you're not an active reader or don't like talking about books, an online book club probably isn't for you.

Third, remember that online book clubs are still social groups. This means that there will be times when you need to be patient and tolerant of others' opinions, even if you disagree with them.

If you're the type of person who is easily offended or defensive, an online book club might not be the best environment for you.

Joining an online book club can be a great way to connect with other readers around the world and keep your reading habit going, even if you're bedridden.

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3) Have a tea party

While being in bed doesn't seem like a celebratory occasion, you can do it with tea parties. Maybe you organize a tea party with your loved one once a week or once a month at a certain time.

During the tea party, you can pull up a table with napkins and bring your best china.

Make dressing up even more fun, even if it's just a feather boa and a cute, flirty hat like this one:

21 activities for bedridden fun things to do (1)21 activities for bedridden fun things to do (2)

Take it a step further and make sandwiches or bake small cakes and pies.Or take an online cooking class.

Then, of course, you need tea, whatever your loved one's favorite flavor is. You can then explore the different tea flavors together.

If a tea party isn't your idea of ​​fun, try thinking the same way about the next best thing. Maybe you can bake together? I did this with my mother after she was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer.

This left her with very limited physical movement from the waist down, but she had upper body strength for the rest of her life.

Together we found creative ways to bake cookies. I turned on the blender and he measured out the ingredients as he carried them to the hospital bed.

Once the recipe was ready, she put the cookie dough on the baking sheet and decorated the cookies. We had a great time, that was the most important thing.

4) Work on puzzles

I think puzzles are a great idea for anyone, bedridden or not. Working on word searches, brain teasers, crosswords and games like Sudoku (which I think is really a form of a puzzle).ideal for keeping the elderly awakeand prevent cognitive decline.

If the puzzle has a "connection" to something in the puzzle's life, even better.Customizable jigsaw puzzles with photos of loved ones and petsThey are also wonderful for anyone with dementia (bedridden or otherwise).

For example, if you are working on a jigsaw puzzle with an image that resonates with an older adult, ask them to tell you when they visited the location or what it means to them. You will likely discover something new about the person.

You may find it easier to use abedside table (see online)who can roll over in bed or afolding laptop table (see online)working on a puzzle with someone who is bedridden.

5) Try out some great Lego projects

I love Lego projects. Especially the ones that exist today. There are so many smart designs and fun projects to build!

You can build anything from cars to Star Wars fighters to buildings to flowers and pretty much everything in between.

Trust me, Lego is not just for kids anymore. Personally, I plan to build a lego room when I retire!

Take a look at the many Lego projects available here.

21 activities for bedridden fun things to do (3)21 activities for bedridden fun things to do (4)

6) Watching TV or movies, especially old favorites

Here's an activity that bedridden people often do alone but can be fun with your participation: watching a movie or TV show. Instead of spending hours flipping through channels or watching Netflix, why not ask your loved one what they want to watch?

You will most likely request an old movie or TV show. Thanks to streaming services and DVD boxes, it's easier than ever to get hold of old media.

While the two of you are watching, watching movies and TV shows can relive memories you might not otherwise see.

If your loved one suffers from dementia or Alzheimer's, watching old movies and TV with them is especially recommended.

Read our article How does memory help with dementia?

7) Compile and view photo albums

Speaking of old memories, creating or flipping through a photo album is a fun way to spend time with bedridden seniors.

If you're like me, you have tons and tons of photos patiently waiting for the day when I have time to put them in an album. So instead of making photo albums a passive activity for a day, help your loved one get involved whenever you can.

Craft stores have a variety of photo albums to buy, or you canput them online.

Depending on your needs or preferences, the sides can have photo pockets, or the images can be glued to one side with adhesive.

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You can also buy decorative paper, paper frames and stickers to highlight your memories.

If you're working on old family photos, ask your loved one to describe the people in the photos, especially those you don't know. It's a good idea to number the photo and make a list of the people in it so you don't forget about it.

Also, ask your loved one if he remembers where and when the photo was taken. If they go down memory lane, they can tell stories for hours.

Cherish this time as you will be able to detail the rich history that is your legacy.

8) Create a themed tag with room decor

One of the worst aspects of being bedridden is that you can no longer see or appreciate the outside world. Your loved one may start to miss past places and events.

While you may not be able to bring them back to these places, you can emulate what they love about these experiences by hosting themed events in their rooms.

Ask your loved one to pick the theme, then assemble all the decorations and events to make the day fun.

For example, if your loved one misses the carnival, you can decorate the room with carnival items, make cotton candy, and maybe even hire a clown (if you (or she) don't have a clown phobia, of course).

For a luau, you can play tropical music and give one to your loved one.Flower necklace (see online).You can alsowear a grass skirt!

21 activities for bedridden fun things to do (5)21 activities for bedridden fun things to do (6)

9) Listening to music together

Music is a powerful thing. You and your loved one can listen to the radio (or Spotify or whatever your favorite music streaming service is) and try to find a new favorite song. You can also take turns playing songs that mean a lot to you.

For people bedridden with dementia, activities such as watching movies or looking at photo albums and listening to music certainly evoke many faces, feelings and emotions.

If you would like to join in with a chant, try the free Music Mends Minds Zoom chants held every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 11:30am PST.Click here for more information.

10) Learn a new language

Nowadays you don't need to be physically in a classroom to learn a new language. Just download an application on an electronic device, pay for an online course and that's it!

A word of warning: we recommend that you only embark on a new language trip with your loved one if they are mentally capable, i.e. they don't suffer from dementia or Alzheimer's and don't suspect cognitive problems.

Otherwise, trying to learn a new language can be very frustrating for them.

A 2020 reportdaily sciencehe cites a New York University study that found that bilingualism can prevent dementia or delay its onset.

It's also fun to learn a new language. You and your loved ones can practice speaking the language.

11) Video chat with others

Once someone is bedridden, their social circle can become very small, especially when visitors are only allowed in at certain times. Expand the world of your loved ones with modern technology!

Services like Skype or Facetime allow them to keep in touch with others. They will love being able to chat with their favorite people again.

We started this at the beginning of the pandemic with distant family and friends. It's a great way to see everyone risk-free, and it encourages a more intimate connection than texting, emailing, or even a phone call.

12) Start an indoor garden

Plants are very beneficial. Being surrounded by greenery can improve your mood, reduce stress, boost creativity, improve memory and alertness, and reduce anxiety.

21 activities for bedridden fun things to do (7)21 activities for bedridden fun things to do (8)

Since your bedridden loved one can no longer go out to tend a garden, bring her the garden with some houseplants. You can create a year-round indoor garden if you can.a kit with a crescent light as above (see online).

Together you can grow simple houseplants such as vegetables or herbs from seed and watch the plant grow day after day. Also, having fresh herbs and vegetables available to cook with is a bonus.

13) Bonsai

Another type of gardening can be the hobby of caring for bonsai. There is certainly an art to it.

Here are some tips for caring for a bonsai when you can't get out of bed.

First, make sure you have the right type of tree. Some trees are better suited for indoor growing than others. If you're not sure, ask a nurseryman or bonsai specialist.


Once you have the tree, you will need to water it regularly. The frequency depends on the type of tree and the pot it is in. A good rule of thumb is to water when the soil feels dry to the touch.

You will also need to fertilize your tree every few weeks. Again, the type of tree and pot will determine how often you need to fertilize. A general rule of thumb is to use a houseplant fertilizer.

Finally, you need to prune your tree regularly. This will help keep you healthy and looking good.

By following these simple tips, you will have a beautiful bonsai tree that will beautify any room in your home.

21 activities for bedridden fun things to do (9)21 activities for bedridden fun things to do (10)

14) Virtual trips

This is an idea that many seniors are unaware of and many family members/caregivers do not think about. Virtual travel around the world!

When I was taking care of my mother, we used Google Maps and virtually visited her hometowntrento, italy.

You don't just get an "overview" of the area with photos. But you can go down to street level and practically "walk" through the streets of Trento. It was amazing.

There are also many museums around the world that also offer virtual tours.Take a virtual look at these wonderful museums in England.

How to entertain bedridden seniors

Most of the ideas above can entertain bedridden seniors, but not all.

Games and crafts are great ways to keep busy together, but you need to make sure the activities you choose are suitable for seniors with limited mobility.

Here are our favorite ideas.

Games for bedridden seniors

How about a game? Playing games together (not video games, mind you) can spark older adults' creativity, challenge them to think critically and strategize, and make them feel young.

Here are some classic games to play together the next time you visit your elderly loved one.

15) board games

You probably grew up playing board games, just like your elderly parents or grandparents. Although the games they both played were different generations, they can certainly agree on a game.

If you have other family members, make sure they join in, as many board games require three to four players.

Board games are fun, challenging and sure to bring back a lot of laughs and fond memories. Try games likeScratchÖMonopoly.

16) card games

All you need is a deck of cards and you can play for hours. From Go Fish to Spar, Kemps, Agram, Forty-Five and Kings Corner, the list of games goes on and on. By the way, these are two-player games only.

There are many card games to choose from.

If you're not sure what the above card games are, ask your loved one who can teach you how to play. Or you can also consult the rules and learn to play together, which will be very rewarding.

17) memory games

Memory games are a great way to keep your mind on high alert. There is evidence that memory exercises can improve memory-related tasks such as aArticle Health.com.

Incorporate the following games into your time with your bedridden loved one:

doing crafts while bedridden

In addition to games, you and bedridden seniors can also immerse yourself in arts and crafts. Here are some crafts to get you started.

18) Crochet or knitting

Unless your bedridden loved one has arthritis or other painful conditions in the extremities, spend some time knitting or crocheting with them.

Here are some fun and creative knitting or crocheting projects you can do!

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ANDAARP, in 2018, found that knitting can reduce the incidence of chronic pain and potentially reduce the risk of dementia.

Even if you don't know how to knit or crochet, that's okay. Ask your bedridden relative to teach you. You will be happy to have meaning again.

If none of you know how to make these crafts, head over to YouTube for step-by-step tutorials to learn your new hobby. Both will have you creating fun projects in no time.

19) Haz The Collage

Collages are fun and give older adults a chance to express their creativity.

Let them choose the theme and then you can put the two photos together for the collage. When your manager's manual dexterity fails, offer to crop the photos.

Here's a great book on collage techniques.

Your eldest darling can attach the photos exactly how they want.

Embellish your collages with pretty ornaments, colorful jewelry, and artificial flowers from a craft store.

20) Build with clay

What can you do with the sound? The possibilities are endless!

Perhaps you and your elderly parent or grandparent can make a clay vase or small sculpture. You can also make decorations for various holidays or small decorations that can be hung on a necklace or made into a decorative tapestry.

Here's a great tom kit to get you started.

You can find more ideas on Pinterest or YouTube for video tutorials that will give you lots of ideas.

When using air-drying clay, you don't need an oven to harden it and make it permanent.

21) Felsmalerei

This is an easy project that is great for everyone in the family. You don't need to be an artist to do this! What you put on the stone can be as simple as writing an inspirational word or drawing a colorful stick-shaped flower.

You can get great ideas on Pinterest or watch some YouTube videos for ideas and tutorials.

All you need to make Painted Stones is someink pensÖLittle penand some flat rocks (from a nearby riverbed andorder them online). If you are placing your masterpiece in an outdoor garden, I recommend using one as well.UV resistant clear spray sealantso your artwork doesn't smudge or run.

*TIP: One thing about using ink pens, you should shake them well before use. You should also "prime" it by holding it as if you were writing with it, then pressing the pen tip repeatedly until the ink starts to flow.

Here's a video I made that gives you an idea of ​​how easy it is to create painted rocks.

22) Press flowers

Pressing flowers is not just a fine art, it is also beautiful.

For the beginning,ftd.comrecommends picking the flowers you want to press (get permission first if they're in someone's garden!). Make sure they are as perfect as possible with no flaws.

Then, remove any leaves you don't want pressed and place the flowers face down on the parchment paper.

Open a heavy book, e.g. B. a phone book and place the flowers and tracing paper on the book page. Use a book that you don't mind damaging if the flower water spills.

Place a second sheet of parchment paper over the flowers and carefully close the book without moving the flowers.

Place one or two heavier books on top of the one with the flowers you are pressing. If you don't have any other heavy books, use another heavy object, like a heavy pot or pan, that you won't need to use for a few weeks.

Place stacked books on one side so they don't fall over.

You and your elderly loved one should wait at least two weeks after applying pressure to the pressed flowers for them to stay in place. sometimes it can take up to a month.

In the meantime, work on other pressed flower projects!

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final thoughts

Even if your loved one is bedridden, his life doesn't have to stop. With a little creativity, you can create unique activities that expand and brighten your world. Try some of the suggestions on this list today!


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