Alzheimer's / Dementia

10/27/2020 | By Seniors Guide Staff

Numerous studies have researched the effects of dementia on loneliness, social awkwardness, and isolation in seniors. Every single study has concluded that seniors with early dementia will see an increase in symptoms if they decrease social contact – even as high as a 26% higher occurrence.

Alternatively, it’s been proven that social connections slow dementia.

Let’s look at some ways that you can get out there and decrease your rate of dementia while increasing your social interaction comfort level.

Staying Social Helps Prevent Dementia

Many seniors unintentionally (and even unknowingly!) decrease their social contact; they may have become less comfortable in conversations and social interactions with others.

Listed below are several ways that dementia causes these anxieties – and ways to combat them.

  • Trouble Hearing. If you’re noticing hearing loss, make an appointment with an audiologist and see if there is anything you can do. Either way, be vocal with your family and friends; let them know to speak louder, slower, and clearer in order to spend quality time with you.
  • Trouble Remembering. Does your brain suddenly seem to forget simple things like you grandchild’s name? This can be really frustrating – but there are ways to slow down dementia. Start gardening; try meditation or yoga; even cooking is helpful for memory building. Anything with repetitive and simple steps can help.

One great step in the right direction? Join your local senior center! These have classes, activities, and many opportunities for socialization.

Volunteering also helps keep the brain active. Be a “candy striper” at your local hospital; or volunteer to water the plants and flowers at the local nursery. Volunteer as a tour guide at your local state park or historical center: these roles have a very specific script to learn and follow, therefore can be easier to maintain.

Overall, it’s important to keep your brain and your body active since social connections slow dementia.

Physical Activity Slows Dementia

You love to walk with your best friend, but you had to stop because you had to say, “HUH?” so much due to the cars driving beside the sidewalk. Try walking around the local track instead. If you enjoy exercise, join the local gym or YMCA and check for their senior days or senior activity time.

Do you enjoy being politically active? Volunteer for a political candidate that you support or at voter registration or on voting day. Check your local technical college schedule, they will frequently offer classes for continuing education. Take a dance class, or a ceramic class, or any other class where you can socialize with people of similar interests.

In general, many seniors start to feel apprehensive and detached with age. But staying physically and socially active can significantly slow the onset of dementia.

Seniors have so much to give and share – we need to work together to stay socially strong, active, and contributing.

Seniors Guide Staff

Seniors Guide has been addressing traditional topics and upcoming trends in the senior living industry since 1999. We strive to educate seniors and their loved ones in an approachable manner, and aim to provide them with the right information to make the best decisions possible.

Seniors Guide Staff