Paul Bergsten

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Practical Gifts for Elderly Parents


Matt Dapore

It isn’t always easy to come up with ideas for gifts to give elderly parents. Oftentimes, seniors have accumulated a lifetime of possessions and they really don’t want or need any more items that might just take up space.


The best things you can gift to your parents are practical items that might make life easier and more comfortable. Here are some ideas.

Key Finder


A key finder is a battery-operated device that makes a loud alarm sound when the house and car keys are detected. The device is attached to the key chain. Seniors with smartphones can detect their lost keys using Bluetooth technology. Some models are radio frequency-based devices.

Large Button Remote

A large button universal remote allows the elderly to change TV channels and adjust volume without struggling to see the plus and minus signs or numbers. These generally work with all major TV brands and cable boxes.


LED Nightlights

Nightlights are one of the most affordable and practical gifts for parents. They offer some extra safety for walking around the house at night. You can buy a box of six for less than $20. These lights plug into any standard electrical outlet. They are bright and turn off automatically during daylight hours. The LED bulbs last for years. Nightlights can be placed in bathrooms, hallways, and kitchens for those late-night trips to the bathroom or fridge.


Single-Serve Coffee Maker


Single-serve coffee makers are so easy to use. There is no need to deal with messy coffee grounds or filters. And, there is little cleanup – just toss the little cup out. These machines are also terrific if mom or dad drinks tea or hot chocolate.


Reaching Tool

A reaching tool is an extension of your hand and arm for retrieving items that are high up, down low, or behind furniture. These sticks are lightweight and operated by your hand to grab something that is not within reaching distance. They are generally about 32 inches long and some have suction cups for better gripping. These tools are ideal for those with limited mobility, painful joints, or who are recovering from surgery.

Brain Stimulating Games

A very thoughtful and purposeful gift is a game or several games that can keep elderly parents engaged and stimulated. There are crossword puzzle and sudoku books that have large fonts for those with impaired vision. Don’t forget to include a box of mechanical pencils with erasers. Jigsaw puzzles can be fun, especially when customized with a family photo that includes the grandkids.


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