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What Impact Does Social Isolation Have on Elderly Health?

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Seniors need to take advantage of social opportunities within their communities, using the outings as a fun way to meet new people and develop strong relationships. Failing to socialize with others can lead to isolation, poor physical health, and a diminished quality of life. Here are some of the ways social isolation negatively impacts an aging adult’s health.

Increases the Risk of Depression

One of the biggest issues associated with isolation is loneliness. When seniors don’t socialize with other people, their stress levels could increase, negatively impacting their mental and emotional health and increasing the risk of depression. Socialization can lead to more feel-good endorphins, which fight against various stress hormones that offset anxiety and depression, being released throughout the body. To boost mental health, your loved one needs to form close relationships outside of your immediate family. He or she can also socialize with others using social media apps, online games, and more. 

Mental and emotional challenges are common for many aging adults, but seniors don’t have to face these challenges alone. In Henderson, senior care agencies can be a great boon to seniors. With the help of the caregivers at Home Care Assistance, your aging loved one can lead a happier and healthier life. We offer a revolutionary program called the Balanced Care Method, which encourages seniors to eat nutritious foods, exercise and socialize regularly, and focus on other lifestyle factors that increase life expectancy.

Leads to Poor Bone Health

Isolation can lead to lack of energy and idleness. Instead of getting up and moving around, seniors may become sedentary and avoid social outings and activities, causing their metabolism to decrease, which means less energy to work out and strengthen their bone health. Older adults need to remain active to increase their balance, reduce joint and muscle pain, and preserve their bone density. Otherwise, the odds of slips, falls, and serious accidents may increase. Lack of movement caused by isolation can also lead to arthritis.

Causes Weight Gain

Avoiding family and friends or hiding out in the home can make it difficult to maintain a healthy weight. Being isolated could lead to shying away from social hobbies or daily activities that burn calories. The loneliness seniors experience because of isolation can also lead to overeating and weight gain. When seniors are unable to control their weight, the risk of diabetes, cancer, and cardiovascular disease increases. Develop ways for your loved one to stay socially active. 

Seniors who don’t take good care of their physical health could develop serious illnesses, making it challenging to care for themselves on their own. If your senior loved one needs around-the-clock assistance at home, the Henderson live-in care professionals at Home Care Assistance are here to help. Our proprietary Balanced Care Method was designed to promote longevity by encouraging seniors to focus on healthy eating, regular exercise, mental engagement, and other important lifestyle factors.

Disrupts Brain Function

Seniors thrive in social networks while communicating and collaborating with other individuals. If they isolate themselves from friends, family, and members of the community, it could have a negative impact on the brain. Isolation prevents older adults from using their brains like they should, which causes the brain to lose a lot of its functions. For example, failing to interact with other people could affect your parent’s thinking skills and cause his or her short-term and long-term memory to decrease. To prevent this from happening, your loved one needs to stay socially active and find ways to stimulate the brain. Encourage your parent to join a support group, attend community events, volunteer, or try other social activities.

Social isolation is only one of many mental and physical health issues that can challenge seniors who live alone. If you’re the primary caregiver for a senior family member and are looking for professional elderly home care, Henderson Home Care Assistance should be your top choice. Our dedicated and compassionate caregivers are committed to helping older adults manage their health and enjoy a higher quality of life in the golden years. Home Care Assistance can be your trusted partner in caregiving for your aging loved one. Contact one of our experienced Care Managers today at (702) 527-7723 to learn more about our reliable in-home care services.