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According to data from the 2009 National Social Life, Health, and Aging Project, seniors who feel lonely and isolated are at a much higher risk of having poor physical and mental health. However, social isolation in the senior years doesn’t need to be so common. Redondo Beach elder care experts have a few suggestions to help prevent your elderly loved one from becoming lonely.
Visit your loved one as often as possible, even if you do not have a specific reason. Daily or weekly visits can reassure your loved one that you consider him or her a priority. If a busy work or personal schedule stands in your way, try to fit in shorter but consistent visits. If you have children or a pet, bring them along. Many elderly people enjoy the company of young people, and animal therapy has been proven to combat loneliness in many instances.
Encourage your loved one to participate in conversations and take the time to listen to him or her. You can learn a lot about your loved one’s interests this way, which will likely give you plenty of topics to discuss. By giving your loved one the chance to talk freely, you can also help him or her rediscover some of the joys he or she may have forgotten about later in life.
Having transportation encourages social integration. When you can, offer your loved one a ride to the store, park, or other places he or she wishes to go. Also, teach your loved one how to utilize public transportation services if he or she is healthy enough to leave the home without assistance. You can also hire a Redondo Beach respite caregiver to provide the transportation your loved one needs.
Many seniors avoid social situations due to embarrassment from undiagnosed hearing or vision complications. Encourage your loved one to have his or her hearing and vision tested regularly. If your loved one is having difficulty communicating or maintaining his or her independence, wearing glasses or a hearing aid may give him or her the courage to be more social.
If your loved one could benefit from increased socialization, consider hiring a professional caregiver. At Home Care Assistance, our part-time care is perfect for seniors who need companionship and emotional support for just a few hours or days throughout the week, and we also offer 24-hour care and specialized Alzheimer’s, stroke, and Parkinson’s home care Redondo Beach seniors can rely on. For more information on our at-home care services, please call (310) 504-0506 to request a no-obligation consultation.