Many of us already know that socialization with others boosts well-being. It keeps us connected to other people’s experiences, beliefs, struggles, humor, opinions, and all kinds of other human occurrences. However, now scientific research is determining that interacting socially with others actually may boost the wellness of both mind and body, leading to many health benefits of socialization in seniors.
The results point clearly to the benefits of friendship and social engagement for older individuals. A study conducted by Rush University Medical Center showed that a senior who noted a high degree of socialization was almost twice as likely to remain free of an impairment involving activities of daily living than someone with a low level of social activity, and about 1.5 times as likely to prevent disability involving instrumental activities of daily living or mobility. Very social older persons had a 70% decrease in their rate of cognitive decline in comparison with unsocial seniors.
Nevertheless, being social is not instinctual to everybody, and for many, it ends up being more difficult with age because one’s capability to get around may become greatly reduced. Here are just a few ways a home care agency such as Carolina Hearts Home Care can help individuals reap the health benefits of socialization in seniors:
- Promote attendance at and serve as a personal escort to enjoyable outings including club meetings, community happenings such as fairs, holiday activities and parades, plays, concerts, and sports events, religious services and activities.
- Share in playing interactive games with the senior such as board games, cards and Nintendo Wii.
- Plan and schedule visits with neighbors and friends.
- Provide transportation to a senior day facility or a senior exercise class.
- Provide companionship during family get-togethers or vacations for maximum comfort and safety.
- Introduce seniors to social platforms such as Facebook and Skype to allow them to connect with family and friends even when they are homebound.
In the Social Activity and Wellbeing of Older Australians Study, evaluating over 6,000 seniors over about 5-1/2 years, older adults who have ongoing, regular social activity had a slower decrease in intellectual and memory performance. Better mental capacity was observed most in those people who were the most socially engaged.
Having a qualified home care partner to provide in-home care to encourage and assist with senior socialization might just be one of the best ways to help an older person continue to thrive and feel alive. Carolina Hearts Home Care’s caregivers are all fully committed to supporting the independence, dignity, and social connectedness of every older person we serve. To learn more about our Hoffman home care and care in the surrounding communities, you can reach us online or give us a call at 1-855-277-2005.