Growing older is a part of life, and on paper, it should be a soulful and rich experience. The thing about growing older is that it can become a bit lonely. People grow apart. Some pass away. Either way, senior isolation is very real and can be very dangerous. There are so many downsides to this phenomenon and it’s not just what we see on the surface. The world’s focus seems to shift away from seniors and that’s a major set up for senior isolation. So, if you have a loved one living alone or in your care, here are some signs that point to the senior isolation.
- Loss of Interest: Everyone has activities that interest them. It could be gardening, sewing, cooking, watching TV among many others. Once seniors start to lose interest in what they once enjoyed, it’s a major tell-tale sign for something underlying. It may start with the reluctance to get out of the house and then move to not being willing to get out of bed. As people get older, it’s important for them to have hobbies and look for ways to occupy themselves. So, if an aged person is not keen on doing any of the things that usually floated their boat, it could be a major sign of senior isolation.
- Problems with Sleeping: Some problems with sleep may be natural as older people experience sleep-related changes. If they start experiencing full-blown insomnia, then this is a sign that something may be amiss. Pay close attention as sleep deprivation has effects that seep into other life areas. If this happens, it’s advisable to consult a doctor right away.
- Unusual Diet: It’s true that with age the desire to eat as much decreases greatly. There’s a difference between not eating as much and not eating the right things. For instance, the elderly community should be exposed to a diet that includes many fresh foods. If that’s not the case, then it could have detrimental effects on their health. Sometimes, it’s not because they don’t want to eat healthy food, but they can’t easily access grocery stores or farmer’s markets.
- No Desire to Interact: It may seem like they are simply staying quiet, but if an older adult is reluctant to socialize, especially if they are normally the socializing type, it may be a sign of alarm. This usually happens when they have not had adequate human contact for quite some time. In fact, this could be an indication that depression is on the horizon. Be proactive even if you cannot be present at all times. Arrange for them to connect with others from time to time.
Senior isolation is very real, and it’s a cause for alarm. If your loved one demonstrates any of the signs above, it may be time to consider outside assistance and resources. You Are Not Alone Elder Care specializes in senior companionship.