While it may seem like a normal part of aging, the effects of isolation can actually be devastating to seniors, affecting not only their quality of life but also their overall health. Learn why it’s so important for older adults to stay socially active, and discover some ideas on how to get going today. It’s easier than you might think.
What are the risks of social isolation for seniors?
It’s no surprise that loneliness is a direct result of being isolated. But it may surprise you to learn that this can actually affect your health — from increasing your risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, and depression to decreasing your cognitive function (which increases your risk of Alzheimer’s disease or other types of dementia).
For seniors, the lack of social interaction increases the risk of premature death, no matter the cause. Therefore, it would be best to get help from the #1 Senior care services in Rhode Island.
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So why do older adults stop socializing? The reasons are many. Many seniors live alone and find it’s more difficult to stay socially active, especially if friends and family don’t live nearby. Fixed incomes can limit participation in activities; so can medical challenges that limit time out in public.
Transportation to and from social events can also play a part. If you or a senior you know no longer has any interest in doing things you/they used to love, it can be a sign of depression, which is common without social interaction (even for active adults with chronic medical conditions).
What are the health benefits of socializing?
If you’ve ever wondered why socialization is important for seniors, just take a look at the active adults you know compared to the older adults who remain inactive. The benefits are clear — improved health, happiness, and overall better quality of life. While the physical benefits of staying active as you age are many, there are also important mental health benefits from staying socially active, such as:
· Emotional support
· Improved mood
· Decreased anxiety
· Improved cognitive skills and memory support
· Longer lifespan