Senior Isolation is a big problem in the U.S.
Senior Isolation is a serious problem. Especially during the holidays, our loved one may feel down and want to be alone. And old age will not be a pleasant experience without a spouse, family members, or friend by your side. According to the statistics, about 28% of the elderly aged 65 years and above were living alone in the US. If the statistics provided by the U.S. Census Bureau are true, then we must understand that our aging loved ones are alone and we as a family should take certain steps to drive their loneliness away.
Not that this is our responsibility, but we must acknowledge the fact that loneliness or isolation is a dangerous issue. It is a big problem that can bring along several other diseases.
Facts about isolation in seniors, that will help you understand the problem of isolation
- Isolation in seniors increases the chances of early mortality
- Loneliness has a serious impact on cognitive health, giving rise to dementia and a gradual cognitive decline
- Chronic illnesses such as arthritis, lung disease, depression, high blood pressure, and impaired mobility are a common occurrence in isolated and lonely seniors
- Lonely or isolated seniors are at a risk of unhealthy behavior such as smoking, lack of physical activity and poor eating habits
All these factors make isolation a risky problem for our loved ones. Another key point is the steps we can take to help our loved ones get out of their loneliness and help them live a healthy and fulfilling life. It can be difficult to attend to your loved one with loneliness and isolation, but it’s not impossible. With the right knowledge, you can do this. Don’t forget about taking care of yourself and keeping your business going while you are taking care of your loved ones. I’m here to assist you on this journey, schedule your planning session with me so we can look at how to keep your life and your business running smoothly.
Steps to Live a Healthy and Fulfilling Life:
Encourage your loved ones to make friends
With age, people tend to become shy and less social. So, you need to persuade them to regularly visit the church, attend social gatherings, go out for a walk in the community parks or even visit health clubs.
Ask your loved ones to visit their local senior center, where they would find people of the same age. It is important that you make your loved ones understand that it is necessary to take initiative as all other individuals of the same age would also behave the same and many may be reluctant to take an initiative.
Encourage your parents to take up their long lost favorite hobby
Old age is the time to relive the fond memories and make a fresh start to live a new life all over again. Hobbies can help in this, and taking up an old hobby, will certainly help your loved ones fight their loneliness and have a sense of accomplishment.
Think of adopting a pet
Many seniors don’t feel lonely when they are with their pets. Playing with them, talking, taking them out for a stroll, etc. So, you can always think of adopting a pet for your loved one to drive away their loneliness.
Register your parents for some activity or exercise class
As we all know and also acknowledge the fact that we are never too old to learn something new. Enrolling our loved ones in some activity or exercise class will help them keep busy and at the same time will also help prevent cognitive decline.
Keeping them busy and giving their brain some food, in terms of some exercise, entertainment and learning will certainly help them overcome isolation.
Such a gesture and the above-mentioned strategies should certainly drive away from the old age blues from your loved one’s life and help them overcome isolation. Keeping them busy and giving them quality time and love is the key to healthy aging.
Address incontinent issues
Having incontinent issues can be very difficult to deal with, especially when in public or with friends. This will cause your loved one to become isolated and not want to leave home. There are so many new advances in incontinent support today, that we can teach our loved ones to address this and be able to have a better quality of life.
Advise hearing and vision tests
If your loved ones have problems hearing or seeing, it can cause them to isolate themselves. Help your loved ones to get their annual hearing and an eye exam can help to find problems. If your loved ones get glasses or hearing aids, it can make a world of difference in their social health.
Have good transportation
Not having good transportation is the main problem of social isolation. When your loved ones get to the age where they no longer drive, it can stop them from doing many things. This day and age we now have uber and lyft drives that can help. By teaching our loved one to utilize these options can help them tremendously with a sense of independence.
Dealing with your loved one’s isolation daily and being careful not to create more problems can cause strain on you, as the caregiver. You can’t be in 2 places at one time: taking care of your business and taking care of your loved one. Look into hiring some help. This will give you the opportunity to get some rest and also make sure your loved one is properly cared for. Or maybe you want to spend more time with your loved one while taking a break from some of the redundant business tasks like sending out emails, returning calls, or organizing files. Let’s chat about how I can be of service to you so you can take care of your business and your loved one.