Social Isolation for Seniors with Dementia

A caregiver grabs a senior's handHumans are a social species, and it is widely acknowledged that for most individuals, social isolation can eventually result in depression. This is a major concern for seniors, as there is high prevalence of isolation after a spouse has passed and a senior is living alone in their house, with too few social activities. And when a senior has or begins to develop dementia, this becomes very crucial: in many cases, depression accelerates the development of dementia.

According to a study by researcher Nicholas R. Nicholson in “A Review of Social Isolation,” published in The Journal of Primary Prevention, isolation could increase health risks.

The study notes how “social isolation has been demonstrated t

If you know a senior who lives in isolation, talk to them about the risks and uncover how they feel about solitary living. Even if they have no cognitive issues at hand, moving to a senior retirement community or even just taking part in more daily social activities can greatly reduce the risk, and improve overall health.

If you know a senior already suffering from dementia, it is important to maintain social activities, despite the difficulties. Find out what social outings currently exist in your community, or what demand or opportunity there is to start some.