Human beings, no matter their age, are social creatures. People need people. Seniors are especially vulnerable to periods of social isolation. During the COVID pandemic, seniors have been more isolated than ever before, leading to major problems with their mental health. Individuals need to be aware of the dangers of social isolation for seniors so they can know to take the correct action when it happens. Getting a senior involved in a community can be highly beneficial.
Signs a Senior Is Socially Isolated
Social isolation affects everyone, no matter their age. Unfortunately, isolation is more likely to be a part of a senior citizen’s life. It is essential loved ones and caregivers are aware of the signs to look for so they will know if a senior is experiencing social isolation.
- The senior has lost interest in hobbies and other activities they once enjoyed.
- Seniors may begin to neglect their hygiene. They may not bathe or wear clean clothing.
- A senior will also often experience mood changes when they are socially isolated.
- Seniors will sometimes avoid social situations entirely.
- A senior may begin to neglect household chores.
Should individuals notice the above signs, prompt action is necessary. Getting a senior involved in vibrant community life is essential for helping them avoid social isolation. Social intervention needs to start as soon as possible so the negative effects of isolation can be overcome.
What Are the Known Dangers of Social Isolation?
It is imperative everyone is aware of the dangers of social isolation so the right intervention steps can be taken promptly. Research is clear that social isolation in the elderly can be detrimental to their health. It can even cause death in extreme cases. The following offers integral insight into the dangers seniors can experience when faced with social isolation.
- Seniors who are socially isolated face increased risks of cardiovascular events, including heart attacks and strokes.
- A senior may also be at a greater risk of developing dementia.
- If a senior is socially isolated, they will often experience varying degrees of depression and anxiety.
- Socially isolated seniors are often obese.
- When a senior is socially isolated, their immune systems weaken which can put them in danger of getting sick more often.
Seniors who suddenly find themselves alone after the death of a spouse, separation from friends and family, or a lack of transportation are most vulnerable. Skyrocketing issues have begun occurring among the senior population since the start of COVID in 2020. If someone notices a senior is suffering from social isolation, memory care may be the answer to help them overcome the negative effects and begin to experience rich socialization again.
What Are the Benefits of Socialization For Seniors?
Socialization has been proven to benefit seniors in a variety of ways. In the age of COVID, socialization is more difficult but certainly not impossible. The following are some of the benefits seniors may experience when they have a healthy social life.
Seniors who regularly experience socialization are less likely to become stressed. Stress wreaks havoc on the health of a senior and can negatively affect them in many ways. Stress reduction is an integral part of protecting a senior’s health.
It has been proven seniors who have a rich social life are more likely to experience an increased lifespan. High levels of socialization promote an increased lifespan in seniors.
Decreased Depression and Anxiety
Because many seniors suffer from depression and anxiety, it is essential for individuals to receive the social stimulation they need. When seniors interact with others, their mental health greatly improves.
Self-esteem is essential at any age. When seniors spend time with friends and family, they are more likely to have a higher level of self-esteem which will help them in every area of their lives.
Get Involved Now
If a senior is isolated, they may need memory care living. With these communities, seniors can begin to experience a social life that helps their physical and mental health in profound ways. Individuals who notice a senior is experiencing social isolation issues need to get involved right away to determine what level of intervention will be necessary. The sooner intervention occurs, the less likely a senior will experience permanent health issues. Family members must monitor the physical and mental health of their senior loved ones consistently.
At Summerfield of Roseville, we are dedicated to providing a safe and socially fulfilling community for seniors to live. Here, seniors begin to thrive and experience life to the fullest every day. Our expert and friendly staff keep seniors safe, healthy, and happy.