Are your parents lonely or socially isolated? It’s easy as you age to lose track of old friends. You retire and stop seeing each other at work. People move away to be close to family or live in a warmer climate. It’s time to address your parents’ social activities and prevent loneliness and isolation.
The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine reported that 25% of adults 65 or older qualify as socially isolated. This is concerning as loneliness and social isolation increase a person’s risk of heart disease by 29% and stroke by 32%. Loneliness increases the risk of anxiety and depression.
Get Them to Volunteer
Volunteering is a great way to stay social. Volunteer with your parents or help them find opportunities to help others in their community. If you need a few ideas, reach out to local churches and non-profit agencies to see if there are any openings for volunteers.
They don’t always have to go out to volunteer. If they’re dealing with limited mobility, they could become an advocate for a local agency like the Alzheimer’s Association. They need advocates to write letters, make phone calls, and attend regular online advocacy meetings.
Sign Them Up for Classes With You
What hobbies or interests do you and your parents share? Suppose your mom loves cooking. Sign up for a local cooking class at a restaurant or catering company. You’ll meet others and enjoy cooking new dishes.
Your dad has always wanted to learn how to paint. Take him to a paint and sip at a local coffeehouse or brewery. You can learn how to paint together while socializing with others at the event.
Instead of learning anything specific, look into events that allow you to socialize with others. Check restaurant schedules to see if anyone is hosting wine or beer pairings. You’ll enjoy a meal and chat with others between courses.
If you don’t have time to attend everything that appeals to them, check out the calendar of events at the local senior center. There are plenty of social programs and events for your mom and dad. They’ll learn something new and enjoy being around others their age.
Arrange Companionship Visits From a Local Home Care Agency
Personal care at home allows your parents to stay social while also enjoying support with personal care, housekeeping, and so much more. Talk to a home care specialist about the services available in their town. Once you understand prices and schedules, book the personal care at home services that help your mom and dad avoid social isolation.