As Christmas approaches, I decided to visit a neighborhood retirement home to look into an old friend and former neighbor. Well into her nineties, she looks fairly healthy considering her age, but as I looked around, I found too many residents alone and without any visitors to interact with.
Old folks have limited regenerative abilities and are more susceptible to disease, syndromes, injuries, and sickness. I am not trying to sound like an expert in geriatrics but is easy to see that the elderly also face other social issues, and loneliness appears to be a malady which could be prevented by all of us. Our life spreads many points of light whenever it is given in service. The secret of joy is living and serving.
I urge everyone to do their small part and visit a family member, an old friend or neighbor and bring them a small present. I am certain that it would mean the world to all of them. Just do it and don’t lie to yourself. The individual who lies and listens to their own lie comes to a point that they cannot distinguish the truth within, or around them, and so loses all self-respect and for others.
Feelings of loneliness and isolation can lead to serious consequences for senior health. Understanding the causes and risk factors for senior isolation can help us prevent it.20 Facts about Senior Isolation That Will Stun You
No one looks forward to the prospect of aging without a spouse or family member by their side, without friends to help them laugh at the silly things in life or to receive support during difficult times. Yet, that is just what many seniors face.
As the baby boomer generation crosses the over-65 threshold, many of our aging population are still feeling alone in the crowd.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau nearly one-third of Americans aged 65 and older, lived alone during the last count. And as family members, and loved ones grow older, the likelihood of them being alone increases.
A classic TV show “The Golden Girls,” features four widows living together, providing each other companionship, friendship and emotional support. Many seniors, however, lack this kind of social network. In fact, loneliness is a serious problem among elderly people. Golden Girls S02E11 T'was The Nightmare Before Christmas https://youtu.be/1tHDma_VlTs
Older adults which do not have children, or those, whose kids no longer show any interest means fewer folks to provide company and care for lonely seniors. https://www.census.gov/content/dam/Census/library/publications/2014/dem…
These are the dirty dozen facts everyone should consider while making plans to visit an older person.
Senior isolation increases the risk of mortality.
Feelings of loneliness can negatively affect both physical and mental health.
Perceived loneliness contributes to cognitive decline and risk of dementia.
Being alone makes seniors more vulnerable to elder abuse.
Social isolation in seniors is linked to long-term illness.
Loneliness in seniors is a major risk factor for depression.
Feeling all alone causes high blood pressure.
Isolated seniors are more likely to need long-term care.
Loss of a spouse is the major reason for loneliness and isolation.
Lack of transportation leads to social isolation.
Loneliness can be contagious.
Lonely people are more likely to engage in unhealthy behavior.
Solutions could be technology and physical contact to reduce senior isolation. Make a call, show them how to use a computer, tablet, or smart-phone so they can participate in a video conference and read about subjects they're most interested in.
Loneliness will shorten your life as much as smoking and drinking. By some measures, it’s worse than being obese. https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-loneliest-generation-americans-more-th…
How To Reduce Loneliness In Old Age https://www.forbes.com/sites/howardgleckman/2018/03/22/how-to-reduce-lo…