Addressing Senior Loneliness on Cheer Up the Lonely Day
July 11 is National Cheer Up the Lonely Day. Loneliness is a common issue for seniors that can luckily be overcome with a little effort. Studies have shown that loneliness and isolation can lead to greater risk of mental and physical decline, so it’s important to stay socially active and connected as we age.
These are ways to help senior loved ones combat loneliness.
- Listen and observe. Encourage loved ones to express themselves to learn more about them, connect and discover interests and passions that may be worth reviving.
- Bridge the generation gap. Find ways for old and young family members to spend time together, whether in person, by phone or via mail.
- Volunteer. Using your time and talents to help others is good for your community and your own mental health.
- Take up a hobby. Hobbies are often naturally social. Join a bridge group or enroll in a class that sounds interesting. Check the local senior center or library for weekly events.
- Take advantage of transportation services. Meeting people is difficult if you’re homebound. Call your local area agency on aging or senior center to learn if they offer transportation services. Home care agencies like SHC also offer transportation services to help seniors get to and from appointments and social engagements.
- Exercise. Walking or exercising is good for the body and an excellent opportunity to be social with a workout buddy or class.
- Keep up doctor’s visits. Routine doctor visits address health problems that may cause seniors to withdraw and become isolated. For example, untreated hearing problems may lead to avoiding social situations because of difficulty communicating.
- Have dinner with others. Eating with others is inherently social. Get together with an old friend, someone you’ve lost touch with, or organize a neighborhood get-together.
- Consider an in-home caregiver. An experienced caregiver can help ease feelings of isolation for seniors and their loved ones.
Remember, it’s the thought that counts. You don’t have to make a grand gesture. Something as simple as sending a card, sharing a meal, or a phone call can go a long way.
If we can help, please contact us. Many families find that the assistance of a professional caregiver does wonders for lonely loved ones. A caregiver can provide companionship for lonely seniors. Transportation services help seniors remain independent and socially active. Additionally, the help of a professional caregiver allows family members to de-stress and enjoy better quality time together.
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