As people grow older, it is not uncommon for them to lose friends and relatives that they were once close with. This can be damaging to mental health and cause physical health problems. Socialization is important for seniors and can provide a range of health benefits, even for those who are naturally introverted. Connecting with family members and friends is especially important for seniors. Some of the health benefits that it provides include improving brain health and function and reducing the risk of developing dementia. Whether you are getting older yourself or want to help an elderly relative, keep reading to find out more about how a good social life can positively impact senior wellbeing.
Improved Mental Health
Seniors are often at an increased risk of loneliness, which can have a devastating impact on their mental health and wellbeing. A huge percentage of seniors around the world live alone and many report feeling lonely on a day-to-day basis, which can lead to feelings of depression, stress, and anxiety. Thankfully there are several ways to combat this. Family visits or regular trips to meet up with other seniors, such as clubs or activity groups can help. Moving to an Orange County assisted living facility such as Belmont Village can also help as seniors are closer to other people.
Better Physical Health
Social engagement is not only good for senior mental health and wellbeing; it is also closely linked with a stronger immune system, especially in older adults. Being exposed to other people regularly can help to strengthen the immune system, making it easier for seniors who socialize a lot to fight off viruses like the flu and common cold. A stronger immune system can also reduce the risk of some serious diseases.
Reduce the Risk of Dementia
Some recent evidence suggests that staying social in later life can be one of the best things you can do for your brain health and cognitive function. Older people who connect and socialize with others on a regular basis tend to get better results when it comes to their performance on cognitive skills tests or memory tests, according to some research. As a result, experts have suggested that older people who spend more time around others may be at a lower risk of dementia and other neurodegenerative conditions compared to those who are more isolated in their lives.
Loneliness can not only cause serious mental health concerns for seniors, but it can also have a big impact on a senior person’s mood. Humans are social creatures by nature, and even the most introverted of people are hard-wired to connect with others. Because of this, seniors who socialize often and get to spend plenty of time around family and friends in a way that is comfortable and enough for them tend to have less low mood and feel happier and more fulfilled overall.
With loneliness a huge problem for older people around the world today, it is important to spend time with and encourage a social life for senior loved ones.