background preloader

Addressing Social Isolation Among Seniors

Addressing Social Isolation Among Seniors
Related:  Social Isolation - the Effects on Elderly's Development.Effects of Social Isolation on Elderly’s DevelopmentCaregiver's resource on the effects of social isolation on elderly development

Social Isolation Among Older Individuals: The Relationship to Mortality and Morbidity - The Second Fifty Years - NCBI Bookshelf 10 Ways to Help Seniors Deal with Isolation and Depression – DailyCaring Many seniors go through major life changes that could make them more vulnerable to depression. But it’s heartbreaking to stand by and watch someone deal with depression or loneliness on their own. Zara Lewis shares 10 ways you can help your older adult cope with symptoms and improve their quality of life. According to WHO estimates, depression affects about 350 million people of all ages worldwide. As my depressed mother-in-law’s caregiver, I’ve come up with a list of tips I wish to share with other caregivers to make it easier for them to help their older adult deal with isolation and depression. 1. Many seniors who live alone are prone to sleeping problems which can aggravate depression. If the person suffers from sundowning or sleep disorder, keep engaging activities or necessary medication close at hand. 2. Struggle with depression is much tougher for people who’ve lost their sense of purpose in life. 3. 4. Research found that physical activity can be a lifesaver for aging persons. 5.

How Social Isolation Affects the Brain Daisy Fancourt was at her home in Surrey in southeast England when the UK government formally announced a nationwide lockdown. Speaking in a televised address on March 23, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson laid out a suite of measures designed to curb the spread of COVID-19, including closing public spaces and requiring people to stay home except for exercise and essential tasks. For Fancourt, an epidemiologist at University College London (UCL), the announcement meant more than just a change to her daily life. It was the starting gun for a huge study, weeks in the planning, that would investigate the effects of enforced isolation and other pandemic-associated changes on the British public. We’re a social species. We really need others to survive. In more normal times, Fancourt and her colleagues study how social factors such as isolation influence mental and physical health. © istock.com, Maria Zamchy The cognitive effects of prolonged social isolation See full infographic: WEB | PDF

Social isolation, loneliness in older people pose health risks Human beings are social creatures. Our connection to others enables us to survive and thrive. Yet, as we age, many of us are alone more often than when we were younger, leaving us vulnerable to social isolation and loneliness—and related health problems such as cognitive decline, depression, and heart disease. Fortunately, there are ways to counteract these negative effects. NIA-supported researchers are studying the differences between social isolation and loneliness, their mechanisms and risk factors, and how to help people affected by these conditions. “NIA is interested in exploring potential interventions to address social isolation and loneliness, which are both risk factors for poor aging outcomes,” said Lisbeth Nielsen, Ph.D., of NIA’s Division of Behavioral and Social Research. Social isolation and loneliness do not always go together. Health effects of social isolation, loneliness Breaking ground in loneliness research Dr. A pioneer in the field of social neuroscience, Dr.

Tackling a silent beast : Strategies for reducing loneliness and social isolation Nobody relishes the thought of getting older with no one at their side to provide support, love, and laughter through good times and bad. Unfortunately, about 40% of older adults experience loneliness, while 7-17% report being socially isolated. Although these terms are often used in place of one another, social isolation and loneliness are not quite the same thing (1). Whether actual or perceived, social isolation and loneliness can have real impacts on the overall health and well-being of older adults (1;3). There are many reasons why older adults may spend more time on their own—living alone, the death of loved ones, certain health conditions, and a lack of access to transportation are just a few examples (6). One systematic review explored the effectiveness of a variety of programs aimed at reducing social isolation and/or loneliness in older adults.

Caregiving Burnout: What It Is and How to Talk About It Caring for a loved one can be stressful, and that stress can have a considerable impact on a caregiver’s personal health and well-being.1 Even so, some caregivers hesitate to bring up the strain they're under for fear they'll make their loved one feel guilty or look like they aren't strong enough or together enough to handle their responsibilities. But talking about burnout is an important part of protecting yourself against it. Here are some talking points you can use to discuss burnout with the loved one you're caring for as well as with other friends and relatives. Understanding Caregiving Burnout Caregiving burnout is when a caregiver becomes physically, mentally, and emotionally exhausted. Why Caregiving Burnout Happens Caregivers can focus so much on their loved one that they don’t (or can’t) take time to care for themselves. The proportions are even higher among those caring for close relatives like partners or parents.2 What Caregiving Burnout Looks Like Join a Support Group

The loneliness of social isolation can affect your brain and raise dementia risk in older adults Physical pain is unpleasant, yet it’s vital for survival because it’s a warning that your body is in danger. It tells you to take your hand off a hot burner or to see a doctor about discomfort in your chest. Pain reminds us all that we need to take care of ourselves. Feeling lonely is the social equivalent to feeling physical pain. Just like feeling physical pain, feeling lonely and disconnected from others is also a signal that we need to take care of ourselves by seeking the safety and comfort of companionship. As scholars at the Center for Healthy Aging at Penn State, we study the impact of stress on the aging body and brain, including how it can worsen cognitive decline and risk for dementia. The health consequences of loneliness The COVID-19 pandemic has put many older adults’ social lives on hold, leaving them at greater risk for loneliness. But even prior to the pandemic, public health experts were concerned about the prevalence and health impacts of loneliness in the U.S.

14 Ways to Help Seniors Avoid Social Isolation - A vast body of evidence demonstrates the physical benefits of a healthy social life. Conversely, loneliness and social isolation have been clearly linked to poor health outcomes. Numerous studies have shown that socially isolated seniors even have a shorter life expectancy. “A Review of Social Isolation” by Nicholas R. Social isolation among seniors is alarmingly common, and will continue to increase in prevalence as the older population grows. Considering the demonstrated risks and the increasing prevalence of this issue, it’s certainly worth addressing how we can promote social integration at the larger social level. Here are some ways to promote social health and connectedness: 1. Lack of adequate transportation is a primary cause of a social isolation. Talk with a Senior Living Advisor Our advisors help 300,000 families each year find the right senior care for their loved ones. 2. 3. 4. Many experts note that the act of nurturing can relieve feelings of social isolation. 5. 6. 7. 8.

How to avoid elderly loneliness during COVID: Tips to stay socially active The risk for the severe form of COVID-19 increases with age, so like many older adults, Katharine Esty spent many weeks this spring without leaving her home at all. Esty, who turns 86 this week, knows all too well the toll such self-isolation can take on mental health. She’s still a practicing psychotherapist who helps patients cope with life — though the sessions are now by phone as the coronavirus outbreak grips the country. Esty has stayed “amazingly healthy,” she said, in part because her busy schedule and the company of her live-in partner Peter, whom she met after her husband of 59 years died, made the quarantine easier. “But there are lots of people who are alone and it’s been really hard… it’s just devastating,” Esty, who lives in a retirement community in Concord, Massachusetts, told TODAY. “Aging well is really all about connections and being socially active.” Studies show she’s right. Staying socially fit, on the other hand, is key to longevity. Stick to a routine: Reach out: A. A.

Loneliness and Social Isolation Linked to Serious Health Conditions Social isolation was associated with about a 50% increased risk of dementia and other serious medical conditions. Loneliness and social isolation in older adults are serious public health risks affecting a significant number of people in the United States and putting them at risk for dementia and other serious medical conditions. A new reportexternal icon from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) points out that more than one-third of adults aged 45 and older feel lonely, and nearly one-fourth of adults aged 65 and older are considered to be socially isolated.1 Older adults are at increased risk for loneliness and social isolation because they are more likely to face factors such as living alone, the loss of family or friends, chronic illness, and hearing loss. Loneliness is the feeling being alone, regardless of the amount of social contact. Health Risks of Loneliness Immigrant, LGBT People Are at Higher Risk Health Care System Interventions Are Key

Related: