Senior Isolation and Virtual Companionship

Senior Isolation and Virtual Companionship

The Impact Of Senior Isolation

Senior isolation is a common problem. As people get older they find it more challenging to get out and socialize. The pandemic has also had a major impact on this as well. Whereas senior isolation is recommended in order to protect our vulnerable citizens, it not only harms the senior but their families who are avoiding visiting their elderly relatives with the pain and guilt of not visiting. Isolation can not only lead to loneliness but further mental health complications. Again, a lack of social interaction can cause depression and cognitive decline.

How Elderly Companion Services Can Help

Elderly companion services can help prevent this feeling of loneliness with both in-home elder care and virtual companionship. There are a range of elder care services that can provide a solution to senior isolation.

  • Adult foster care

Adult foster care (AFC) is a service for elderly adults who are unable to live alone safely. Caregivers provide companionship, meals, and personal care assistance.

  • Support to sandwich caregivers

A sandwich caregiver is someone who cares for two generations, typically their parents and children. This can be a challenging role. Elder care services offer support to these individuals and their families.

  • End of life doula

They provide support to those with an advanced stage illness and their families by maintaining calm during such a tough time and meeting their emotional and spiritual needs.

  • Online companionship

Online companionship is virtual elder care. It’s an alternative to in-person services.

What Is Virtual Companionship?

Virtual companionship has many functions. It can involve speaking to seniors through video conferencing while providing companionship. It can also help seniors with challenging, daily tasks or reassure them if they have any other concerns. Many seniors can also use virtual assistant apps and artificial intelligence-based tools. They are voice-activated and can help seniors out with many tasks around the house. Families have also invested in elder cams which monitor seniors living alone and alert caregivers to any potential safety issues. In short, there are several ways technology can help with elder care.

The Benefits Of Online Companionship

Virtual or online companionship can be very effective in combating loneliness in seniors. This interaction gives them a confidence boost and motivates them to persevere with daily tasks. It also gives the family peace of mind knowing that their elderly relative is supervised even when they can’t be there themselves. Advances in technology can help to protect the safety of seniors who live alone.

Online companionship is a way to prevent other mental health issues that can occur due to isolation. Loneliness can cause depression and an increase in social interaction can help boost the mood of seniors. Senior isolation also often results in cognitive decline. Cognitive functions such as memory, logic, decision making, and problem solving can be affected. Isolation has a negative impact on cognitive function and is also associated with a higher risk of dementia.

Providing companionship to the elderly should, therefore, be a top priority. If it’s challenging to do this in person, then virtual companionship can be an alternative solution. In order to reduce the negative effects of loneliness in seniors, social interaction can make all the difference. This is where elderly companion solutions can help by taking some of the strain off the family by giving the needed support.  

At You Are Not Alone Elder Care (YANAEC), we offer a range of elder care solutions including online companionship. We provide these services throughout NJ. We work closely with families and sandwich caregivers and understand that every situation is different. Our goal is to offer you a tailored service to ensure your family is comfortable. If you’re looking for such a service for yourself, a relative or loved one, get in touch with us today