June 30, 2021
Health Benefits of Socialization for Seniors
A good laugh may really be the best kind of medicine, especially if it’s laughter shared with loved ones. Social ties are important at any age, but the value of strong personal connections is especially beneficial for seniors, who may be more likely to experience isolation and loneliness.
In fact, numerous studies show there are health benefits of being social for seniors.
Why is socialization important for seniors?
Through the years, you’ve likely had all manner of relationships, each with its own unique place in your life. In your senior years, your social connections still serve a wide range of purposes—many that go far beyond the simple pleasure of spending time with a beloved companion.
If you’re wondering, “What are the health benefits of socializing?”, you might be surprised to learn how many ways social relationships affect your overall well-being. You may think of friendships and family ties as pure enjoyment and entertainment, but the fact is, those relationships play an important functional role in your life.
The health benefits of being social for seniors are far-reaching. Researchers believe that an active social life supports your physical and mental health, as well as promoting your cognitive health and even a longer lifespan.
The physical toll of mental strain is a big part of this equation. Studies show that people who experience high levels of stress or struggle with social isolation and loneliness are more likely to have weaker immune systems, are more prone to anxiety and depression, and may have a higher risk for heart health problems.
At the National Institute on Aging, researchers have found links between social isolation and functional decline, and even death. In a similar vein, studies show that social seniors tend to have more healthy habits like regular exercise and better nutrition, all of which play into better mental and physical health.
A related health benefit of being social for seniors is peer-to-peer education; seniors who share their own health experiences may prompt others to get screenings or be more alert about potentially concerning symptoms.
Cognitive function is yet another important example of the health benefits of older adult socialization. In a study at Rush Alzheimer’s Disease Center in Chicago, researchers monitored seniors’ cognitive function over a 12-year span. Those with stronger social activity showed 70% less cognitive decline than those who were more reclusive.
How can seniors build stronger social connections?
The health benefits of being social for seniors are so far-reaching they really can’t be overstated. That’s why senior living communities like Springpoint Living at Manalapan are so committed to finding ways to help seniors socialize and avoid isolation.
Within our community, you can build relationships through:
Think about a topic or cause that captures your attention, and look into classes, lectures, or community organizations that match. Spending time exploring your own interests will put you in touch with others who share your enthusiasm, and that’s a terrific foundation for a new friendship.
Many community organizations and senior living communities offer programming dedicated to promoting more fulfilling lifestyles for older adults, which is a great way to meet others in the same stage of life. Through these programs, you’re likely to discover practical new skills as well as building friendships as you collaborate through creative arts classes, cooking demonstrations, or gardening.
The time and freedom to explore your surroundings is a great benefit of retirement living. Residents at Springpoint Living at Manalapan bond through excursions to cultural events and other destinations in the surrounding community, which provide natural settings for establishing social connections that ultimately boost mental and physical health. This is just one way our senior living community offers a social lifestyle, along with a little extra support to improve your quality of life.
At Springpoint Living at Manalapan, you’ll find person-centered care options that enrich each day, celebrate shared experiences, and foster friendships. Contact us to schedule a visit and learn more about making a home where every day is a new opportunity to experience a life well lived.