Dealing with loneliness can be especially tough for elderly adults. Without regular socialization, it can be easy for them to feel isolated and depressed. Ensuring that your elderly loved one has a robust and rewarding social life is important as they move into their golden years. Helping them build strong bonds with others can improve their confidence, and give them a purpose and something to look forward to. Here are some tips for helping your elderly loved one maintain a healthy social life.
Keep Connected as a Family
If your loved one lives close to their family, it’s easy to create opportunities for bonding. They can easily join in for family dinners or any other gatherings. If there are grandkids around, there are even more opportunities for them to attend activities such as plays or sports events. Having your loved one take charge of the kids over an afternoon or even a weekend – if they’re up to it – can even help give you some time to relax.
If your loved one doesn’t stay close, however, you will need to make an active effort to stay connected. Schedule regular visits with them so that they have something to look forward to. Phone them often, or better yet, spend time with them over a video call. Always be sure to invite them for any monumental family events such as a graduation or birthday.
Encourage Them to Check Out a Local Community Center
Community centers often have activities and programs tailored for those in their golden years. These can include flower arranging, dance, or language classes. Encouraging your loved ones to join these events can help them expand their social network and keep their minds active and sharp as they pick up a new skill. Being around others their age can also help them feel understood and supported. If these programs are held regularly or even weekly, it also provides some structure to your loved one’s social calendar.
Volunteering is a great way to keep active. Not only does it introduce them to a thriving social network, but volunteering also helps your loved one feel appreciated. It grants them a larger purpose and also benefits the community at large. Local organizations are always on the lookout for volunteers, so try and find a cause that your loved one is passionate about, and introduce them to a suitable network.
Ensure They Keep In Contact with Old Friends
It’s easy to fall out of contact with friends as we get older, but we shouldn’t underestimate the value of our old friendships. For your elderly loved ones, old friendships are important to maintain as they are a source of good memories and comfort. If you notice your loved one withdrawing from old friendships, encourage them to give their old friends a call. If your loved one is agreeable, you can even set up a dinner for them and their friends at your home.
Socialization is important for your loved ones. A robust social network can make all the difference when it comes to having a fulfilling retirement. At Discovery Village At Deerwood, our Celebrations Activities & Events program offers a full calendar for your loved one to enjoy.