Loneliness in older generations is a big issue and can be more dangerous that being obese. These individuals tend to socialise less as mobility can be an issue and the people around them start to age too. After retirement it can be difficult for some to interact with others as much as they used to during a work day. As their own children grow up they have their own families and work careers to focus on and therefore the time they have available to sit with their elderly relatives naturally decreases. A research report found that loneliness is twice as devastating to the health of the elederly when compared to obesity. It is thought that there are over 2 million people in England that are over the age of 75 and live alone, with more than 1 million of their people saying they can go a whole month without speaking to a family member, friend or even a neighbour!
When people live alone they are often isolated for long periods of the day and this can cause depression and further physical and mental health issues. It has been reported that long periods in isolation can actually lead to a very quick decline in cognitive ability as the brain is not stimulated. It is also thought that medical issues such as depression, arthritis and mobility disorders are all impacted upon as a result of isolation. It can also cause an individual to not get the care and attention that they need and medical conditions tend to go unnoticed and untreated for longer periods of time in those people who are on their own for large portions of the week.
Social isolation can occur due to geographic reasons, with those elderly people who live in rural areas having less access to groups and communities of people, when compared to those who live in urban areas. This is where neighbours and smaller community groups such as the WI can become invaluable to others.
One way to combat the loneliness that can be felt in older age is to consider a Live in Care Plymouth company that will provide carers that can help with everyday activities and personal care and also give the individuals someone they can speak to and interact with throughout the day. Another person to speak to can be all it takes to lift an elderly person’s spirits.