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The Importance of Social Connections for Seniors

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The Importance of Social Connections for Seniors

The need for strong social connection is innate in humans, and having healthy connections is beneficial to both physical and mental health. Social networks for seniors are especially important because of the aging process and how it affects the mind, body, and quality of life.

Familial connections, romantic relationships, and friendships are all examples of social connections within a social network. These can lighten mood, lower risk of dementia and general cognitive decline, and create new neural pathways that stimulate positive brain activity. 

Social Networks for Seniors

Essentially, a social network is any group of people who regularly interact on a personal level. For older adults, this may include friends and neighbors in a community, family members that visit often, fellow church or club members, or any group of like-minded people they feel comfortable confiding in or enjoy talking with.

Part of the aging process includes retiring from work, losing friends and family, and decreased mobility and physical activity – all of which contribute to social isolation. This means it can take more work to maintain current relationships as well as create new ones. Lacking opportunities for social engagement, or feelings of loneliness, can have a profoundly negative impact on mental and physical wellness.

Living Well in Senior Living

senior living communities of all types offer various social activities and opportunities to meet new people. Creating new relationships and growing social networks to a stable size has the potential to improve symptoms of depression, anxiety, dementia, and other mental illnesses. Studies also show this can help decrease hypertension, increase the ability to focus and learn, and add on up to 5 more years of living.

If you are interested in learning more about how we encourage and support social interaction and social networks for residents, please feel free to give our team at The Virginian a call. We truly believe that retirement provides an opportunity to enjoy life to the fullest, and we would love to help that become a reality for you or the seniors in your life.

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