Loneliness in older adults is not an uncommon predicament. Research suggests that more than three in five Americans are lonely. While young adults report instances of isolation. However, in seniors, there are extremely high rates. In fact, 40 percent of senior adults identify with feelings of loneliness and isolation.

How can Social Isolation Impact the Health and Well-Being of Older Adults?

Evidence has it, social isolation and loneliness hinder good health. They can put older adults at the risk of developing high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, weakened immune system, anxiety, depression, cognitive decline. Loneliness has also reportedly been known to develop risk of mortality. Apart from systemic health issues, social isolation can also impact their emotional and mental wellbeing. The feelings of being alone and having no one to talk to can lead to depression.

Ways To Combat Social Isolation In Senior Adults

  1. Accessible Technology
    Seniors can benefit from accessible technology like mobile phones, tablets or television. It can allow them to kill time, share photos, make video calls or read up on news. They must know how to operate them. In order to keep things easy and straightforward, senior adults must get initial training on how to use them.
  2. Emotional Support Groups
    Apart from technology, losing human touch in independent communities can also lead to feelings of loneliness. Finding your emotional support groups. Either they can be facilitated by professionals such as clinical workers, psychologists, and marriage or family therapists. In addition to that, friends groups, yoga groups, meditation groups can also help older people socialize well while keeping a routine.
  3. Chatbots and Virtual Assistance
    Sometimes, when people are lonely, chatbots can be a channel to express and talk about their feelings. As technology continues to evolve, you can get suggestions, get insights, or even just vent out.
  4. Virtual Reality
    Virtual reality has a lot of potential benefits as it helps combat social isolation in older adults. Residents can use VR headsets to explore new places, visit museums or even play games. Studies have shown that regular VR use can significantly improve quality of life among senior living residents.
  5. Intergenerational Friendships
    Making friends with residents and staff is a key part of social well-being. It can help them stay connected and acquire the right help when needed. Having visitors at their setting can also count as a source of happiness
  6. Participate in Voluntary Programs
    There are many voluntary programs seniors can take part in. While technology cannot fill the void every time, participating in such events or programs can provide opportunities to socialize.

In Summary

Senior adults can be affected by feelings of social isolation and loneliness. There can be both technological and non technological ways to prevent it. Such as, accessible technology, virtual reality, emotional support groups, chatbots, voluntary programs etc.

Exordium Networks takes pride in providing top-notch, modern IT solutions for senior living which can also help them keep busy. Reach out to us at (972) 573-1180 to discuss all your technological needs and requirements with us.

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