As people age, it’s not unusual for social interactions to decrease. This is especially true for seniors. All around the world, there are millions of seniors who are living in a home without a spouse or family, causing them to spend increased isolation, and often leading to loneliness in seniors.
Taking every opportunity to lessen this isolation is greatly appreciated by your senior loved ones. July 11th is known as ‘National Cheer Up the Lonely Day’ making it the perfect day to make seniors feel even more loved and cherished than normal.
Loneliness in Seniors
Seniors experience a lot of difficulties; moving from an established neighborhood, retirement, the passing of friends and spouses, health challenges, and long-distance family members. It’s no surprise that seniors are at an increased risk of experiencing loneliness.
Studies show that this loneliness can have extreme impact on the health and wellbeing of seniors, making it an important obstacle to tackle. When seniors begin to experience the impacts from loneliness, it can often lead to depression, increased injuries and accidents, slower recovery, and decreased cognitive function.
Focusing attention to your senior loved ones on National Cheer Up the Lonely Day is great motivation, but keep in mind that reaching out to seniors consistently throughout the years is needed for their continued wellbeing.
Decreasing Loneliness in Seniors
While the potential of your senior loved ones to become chronically lonely, leading to more serious issues is concerning, there are several great ways to help in decreasing the loneliness in seniors.
Many family members of seniors feel as though they aren’t able to help with loneliness when they’re far away, but there are other ways to decrease loneliness of senior loved ones from a distance.
Frequent Phone Calls
While family members do have their own lives to live, even a short phone call a few times per week can significantly decrease loneliness. Phone calls help your lonely senior remember that they are thought of often and can positively affect their entire day.
Help Find Clubs and Events
Going to a new event by yourself can be intimidating for some people, but it’s a great opportunity to meet new potential friends and acquaintances. It may be difficult for your senior loved ones to find activities of interest in their area, so helping them search the internet for local events and clubs can help significantly with loneliness in seniors.
Pets are the epitome of unconditional love and comfort, meaning that they can make an immense difference in relieving loneliness in seniors. They also encourage seniors to be more active, which is just an added bonus.
Online Support Groups
It’s possible that your senior loved one isn’t in the mood or headspace to leave the comfort of their home, but fortunately, with today’s advances in technology there are several online support groups specifically for seniors. Since it’s online, it’s also the perfect opportunity to meet people from different part of the country, allowing for more potential to make a new friend.
Explore a New Hobby
Sometimes simply being in the presence of other people is all that your senior loved one needs to decrease loneliness. New hobbies that are in other areas besides the home can be a great way for seniors to find something new that they enjoy, without having to directly interact with others.
In-Home Care and Relocation
If none of the above options are preferable to your seniors loved one, an alternate solution is to hire trained care management professionals to come over to their home interact and socialize with your senior. They can also take your senior out to shopping centers, grocery stores, and events so they don’t have to get overwhelmed with doing these things alone.
For seniors that are limited on mobility or need extra care, relocating to an assisted senior living facility could be the perfect option. Not only are there professionals available to your senior loved one at all times, but there are also opportunity to interact with other seniors every single day.
Let National Cheer Up the Lonely Day be the motivation to push you to begin exploring new ways that you can consistently provide comfort and decrease loneliness in your senior loved ones.