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Gifts for Seniors: 25-Plus Ideas for Father’s Day and Beyond

Buying gifts for seniors living in a long-term care facility may not be an easy task, but it isn’t an impossible one. Unless a loved one lives independently in a house, most senior citizens don’t have much space to collect many items, especially large ones. That’s why simple yet creative gifts are your best options. With a little common sense, you can find a Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, birthday, or holiday gift that is not only suitable but appreciated, too.

senior man opening gift

Chances are if your loved one lives in an elder-care facility, the private living space or room is small and kept unlocked most of the time, allowing fellow residents and staff members free reign. Most of the time, personal belongings such as small gifts are safe. But there’s always the chance that something can come up missing – by getting lost in the laundry, accidentally thrown out by housekeeping, or “borrowed” by another resident.

25 Ideas for Gifts for Seniors in Long-Term Care

photo album, suggested among gifts for seniors

An album with family photos can be a great gift for a senior citizen.

If you have a parent or grandparent in a long-term care facility, remembering them on special days such as Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, and Grandparents Day is extra special. While personalized gifts are thoughtful, think about common-sense presents, too, such as daily items your loved one can use. You may also want to find out what items are accounted for and acceptable. Some ideas suitable for both women and men include:

  • Toiletries such as a toothbrush, toothpaste, brush, mirror, lotion, powder, drawer sachets, facial tissues, scented soap and shaving cream
  • Clothing including a housecoat, jacket, hat, sweater, scarf, gloves, pants, shirt, socks, and slippers
  • Small wall-mounted television
  • Big button universal TV remote
  • DVD player with classic movies and television shows
  • Big button telephone
  • Decorative and sturdy tote bags for shopping
  • Wall calendar made with pictures of grandchildren and with important dates highlighted
  • Walker or other daily living aid to help prevent falls
  • Walker accessories such as a zippered bag, tennis ball slider feet, or a cup holder
  • Rubber cane tips
  • A selection of stationery and greeting cards already addressed and stamped
  • Framed wall photos or photo albums of family members and friends
  • Fancy eyeglass chain or cord
  • Decorative hand towels or pillowcases
  • Flannel sheet sets
  • Afghan, comforter or duvet
  • Lap blanket
  • Playing cards, books, puzzles or adult coloring books
  • Budget prepaid cell phone designed for senior citizens
  • Homemade crafts, snacks or treats
  • CDs or iPod filled with your loved one’s favorite music
  • Watch or wall clock
  • Handbag, coin purse or wallet
  • Suspenders or belt


5 More Ideas for Any Occasion: Gifts of Time

man visiting father

Just visiting a senior citizen can be the greatest gift of all.

Spending money should not always be the objective when getting a present for a loved one in a long-term care facility. For many senior citizens, a simple gift of time is more precious than a sweater or physical gift. Consider some of these “presents” the next time you are looking to do something special for your senior loved one:

  • Spend an afternoon just visiting. Take your loved one around the facility’s grounds and talk about whatever comes to mind, from friends to what the grandchildren have been up to. Many times, senior citizens just want companionship or someone to share some time with.
  • Take your loved one out for some time at the park, shopping, or going to his or her favorite restaurant.
  • Become a volunteer. Teach your loved one (and others in the care facility) a new skill or craft. If you know how to crochet or knit, others probably would love to learn this art.
  • Enlist young children or grandchildren to draw pictures and write letters to other senior citizens living with your loved one. Many school classrooms love to do this as it teaches students compassion for others.
  • Spend time reading to those who are no longer able to read a book, or record some books for them to listen to.


It’s the Thought That Counts

Don’t worry or stress over finding the right present for your loved one. Many seniors greatly appreciate just having you and your family come visit as often as possible. This is especially true on holidays such as Mother’s Day and Father’s Day.

Dates for Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Grandparents Day

Some reminders in case you haven’t marked your calendar yet:

Mother’s Day: Celebrated on the second Sunday in May:

  • May 14, 2017
  • May 13, 2018


Father’s Day: Celebrated on the third Sunday in June:

  • June 18, 2017
  • June 17, 2018


Grandparents Day: Celebrated on the Sunday in September after Labor Day:

  • Sept. 10, 2017
  • Sept. 9, 2018
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  • Mary Beth Adomaitis

    About :

    Mary Beth Adomaitis a freelance writer living in Southern California. She has written about senior topics for several senior living websites. She also has a blog, Unwrinkled Hearts, which was started after her mother-in-law passed away in 2015. It focuses on elderly living in the 21st century. Mary Beth has been a writer/journalist for more than 25 years, lending her talents to companies such as The Los Angeles Times, where she also served as a copy editor and graphic designer.


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