Social isolation is a common and growing problem among the elderly. According to trusted providers of home care in Palm Desert, isolation among seniors can result in both physical and emotional problems. As a caregiver or family member, it may help to understand the following facts to prevent your loved one from socially withdrawing.
Volunteering Can Reduce Feelings of Loneliness
Many seniors are left in an empty house with nothing to do all day and no one to talk to. For many, volunteer work can help prevent loneliness. Your loved one may benefit from participating in a volunteer program in the community and socializing with others.
Group Exercise Programs Reduce Isolation
Social isolation can lead to emotional and physical issues, but group exercise can help your loved one connect with other people by engaging socially with peers while simultaneously improving physical health and wellbeing.
Losing a Spouse Is a Major Risk Factor
Studies have confirmed that losing a spouse, which becomes more common as seniors age, increases a senior’s risk of social and emotional isolation.
Isolated Seniors Are More Likely to Enter a Nursing Home
Socially isolated seniors are more likely to enter a long-term nursing home than elderly people who have an active social life. For seniors who don’t require around-the-clock medical care, hiring an at-home caregiver can help stave off feelings of loneliness and isolation.
Geographic and Physical Isolation Can Lead to Social Isolation
Many seniors face geographical or physical barriers that prevent the elderly from visiting friends and family or engaging with the community. This may result in elderly people feeling trapped, which can lead to feelings of alienation and depression.
Isolation Is Linked to Long-Term Health Problems
A major study has linked loneliness and social isolation with a list of long-term illnesses and health problems, including depression, arthritis, and lung disease. Additionally, seniors who are socially isolated are more likely to become the victim of elder abuse, which can further isolate the elderly. Feelings of loneliness and disconnect from friends and family has also been linked to accelerated cognitive decline.
If you’re concerned about your senior loved one becoming isolated, consider reaching out to Home Care Assistance. Our Palm Desert live-in home care or part-time hourly care is ideal for seniors who could use help preparing daily meals, running errands, remembering to take medication, or who could simply use the extra companionship. Contact a friendly Care Manager today at 760.345.0001 to schedule a complimentary in-home consultation.