Loneliness and isolation can be a problem for people at any age, but tends to be more prominent in seniors over the age of 50, and more so if their spouse or partner has passed away. With isolation and loneliness come many physical and mental risks including increased mortality rates, higher sickness rates, cognitive decline and increased risk of dementia, and increased depressions and long-term illnesses to name a few.
Much of this comes from being cut off from social interaction that keeps us engaged both physically and mentally, and helps to catch any symptoms sooner and prompt visits to the doctor more often.
But everything isn’t doom and gloom, and it is never too late to get back on the social trail.
Here are a few suggestions on how to deal with loneliness yourself or help someone you love deal with loneliness as they age:
- Make New Friends
This suggestion may feel daunting but if you get out there and start meeting people you’ll find yourself with new friends fast. Whether you start by going to the local legion, taking dance lessons, or just going to the community center, you’ll meet new people, engage in conversation, and tell your favorite stories to a new set of listeners, and soon you’ll have a group of local people that you can meet with regularly.
Volunteer work will get you out of the house, connect with new people, and give you a strong sense of meaning and well being in your life. Whether you are helping at the local food bank, working at a women’s shelter, or helping neglected animals, you’ll be making the world a better place and helping your own physical and mental health at the same time. What ever the work is, there are many local organizations that need your help.
- Take up a new hobby
A new hobby can keep you motivated and looking forward to completing a project. Hobbies also help you to set healthy goals and achieve them, no matter what you take up. Some great ideas include: knitting, gardening, miniature models, playing a new instrument, art (of any kind), music, dancing, archery, wood carving, at home wine making, and many, many more!
- Adopt a pet
This is a great option for people that can handle the physical requirements of pet ownership. Not only will you now have a companion that loves you unconditionally but you’ll find yourself getting more exercise, feeling uplifted, and a stronger sense of meaning in your life.
While getting a new puppy or kitten might be a daunting task for some seniors, there is always the option of adopting another senior, pet that is. There are shelters like Saint’s Pet Rescue that focus on Senior pets, who are looking for companionship just like you, but without all the intense training and energy that comes with younger animals.
- Book a companion visit with Care At Home Services
The companions at Care At Home Services are here for just that, companionship! Whether it’s just a few hours once a week or regular visits each day we know that our specialized matching system can find the perfect companion for you. You just let us know what your favorite activities, hobbies, and passions are and we will find you the perfect match in our system.
If you have any concerns or would like some help living more comfortably at home or booking a companion visit, please don’t hesitate to give us a call at 1-866-982-2737 and speak with our team about setting up an at home care assessment today.