Isolation and loneliness are detrimental to health at any age. But when elderly or low-income individuals are among the victims, the situation becomes more worrying.
The National Institute on Aging warns that social isolation is associated with several adverse health outcomes, including memory loss and depression. Some have called this a significant concern for public health. However, the good news is that governments and human health groups have begun focusing on the welfare of the elderly. They provide education and a steady supply of resources to combat the difficulties brought on by isolation.
There are many ways you can make a difference in preventing older citizens from being socially isolated. If you want to aid an older person in your life, whether as a friend, family member or as community volunteer, here are some easy ways to do so:
Discuss what you’ve been up to recently and what you have planned. Give others an idea of your feelings and ask them about theirs.
It’s imperative to promote movement of any type
This may be everything from walking to swimming to chair yoga for seniors. Do anything you can to keep them moving.
Create opportunities for people to interact with one another
Link them up with local senior resources. Check out several clubs for something they could be interested in, like quilting, card playing, bingo, or studying the Bible.
You should visit them as often as possible, and if you can, bring along some company like your kids, friends, and pets.
Have them cook together if they are living on their own. Put in an afternoon of meal prep for the week. Invite them over for tea or dinner. It’s incredible how much you can learn from just a few hours spent at another person’s home.
Gather them together for a trip
Take the bus or train to a gallery, library, park, or senior center for some out-of-the-ordinary culture. Taking them on errands like grocery shopping might help them feel like a regular part of your life.
Give gifts on holidays
Take part in an anonymous gift-giving program, to provide holiday happiness to seniors who may be alone or struggling financially.
Adopt an elder
If you don’t have a senior relative to care for, you can “adopt” one from your community. You can assist in improving someone’s quality of life by giving them your attention, engaging in conversation with them, and providing transportation.
Take part in support programs
Taking part in these programs is a terrific way to help seniors combat feelings of isolation since they provide opportunities for fun and friendship.
Another option is to introduce the senior in your life to the numerous advantages of a retirement community like AgeCare if they are living alone. In these next-generation senior communities, residents have all they need to live independently and actively. Many are kind, welcoming, and full of life and companionship — the ideal cure for isolation.