5 Tips to Help Beat Your Aging Parent’s Loneliness

5 Tips to Help Beat Your Aging Parent’s Loneliness

Loneliness is a very common among the elderly population and that has a lot to do with ageing. Due to decreased mobility and constant health issues, seniors often isolate themselves from the world. Additionally, they may feel embarrassed and self-conscious if they are visually impaired, suffer from incontinence and experience partial or complete hearing loss.

Researchers conducted a study at the University of California and concluded that 45% of seniors over 60 years of age who reported loneliness have an increased risk of death. Scientists also believe that loneliness affects the human body the same way stress does and leads to conditions like Alzheimer’s and heart disease. However, there are things you can do to beat your ageing parent’s loneliness and here are 5 tips for how to do just that.

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Take time to listen and talk to them

Take time to listen and talk to them

One of the easiest ways to be there for your ageing parent is to listen and talk to them. This means that you should actively participate in the conversation and give them an opportunity to express themselves. Staying in regular contact with them will also help even if you call just to ask them about their day or tell them about yours.

Teach them how to use technology and social media

Technology and social media knowledge don’t come easily to most of the elderly population, so your parent will need help to understand the basics. This is an excellent solution if your parent doesn’t live in the same city or country as you and will help you stay in touch. Teach them how to use apps like Skype, Whatsapp, Viber or Messenger, for face-to-face calls.

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Introducing them to Facebook could also be interesting since it will improve their social interactions, they can play games and also see the photos their friends post. E-mail is another useful tool for staying in touch which resembles letters and they will probably have minimal trouble mastering it. Remember to have patience with them and always explain things to them in the simplest way possible since for many of them technology is scary.

Hire a professional caregiver

There is a number of ways you can find help at home for your ageing parent. One of them is hiring services that will prepare meals and drop them off, and cleaners to tidy up. Also, a professional caregiver is a great solution if your parent needs assistance with basic functions like walking and bathing.

You can organize this kind of help to be available on a daily or weekly basis depending on the needs of your parent. Every visit from any of these services will give them something to look forward to and positively affect their mood so they don’t feel lonely or abandoned.

Consider using assistive devices

There are various assistive devices that will make your ageing parent’s life easier when you are not there. For example, in the US installing an elevator so the elderly don’t have to climb stairs is very popular and helps decrease the risk of accidental falls. Based on the US National Safety Council statistics, this type of injury often happens to people over 65 and 30% of them have fatal consequences.

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Personal medical alarms in Australia are widely in use since they offer freedom and independence to the elderly person without making them feel incompetent. For example, practical 4G mobile medical alarm pendant allows users to live life to their fullest by making them feel safe. It has an SOS button and a fall detector. Since many older Australians desire to stay at their homes, elderly care in this country offers various options that will accommodate that, like these medical alarms.

Spend time with your aging parent

If possible, visit your parent once a week or more frequently and spend some quality time with them. You can do gardening, make cookies and put puzzles together which will help them work on their motor and cognitive skills. Kids like to spend time with their grandparents, so organize family gatherings like barbecuing, besides celebrating anniversaries and birthdays.

Finally

The best way to beat your ageing parent’s loneliness is to find time for them and provide them with the best possible care with medical alarms and caregivers. An ordinary conversation will help them feel they still matter and boost their self-esteem, so they will go and build their own social interactions. Ageing is incurable, but you can make it more pleasant for the whole family.

 

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