10 Ways for Seniors to Stay Socially Connected

One of the advantages of communal living in an assisted living community is the social opportunities that help avoid loneliness and the isolation of living alone. There are many ways for seniors to socialize in their assisted living homes. Recreation or activities directors plan social engagements both in and out of the community. Residents are encouraged to take advantage of scheduled activities as well as impromptu chances to socially connect.

 

It isn’t always easy to begin socializing with new neighbors in a new environment. Seniors may find just starting a conversation to be intimidating. What can you do to help a loved one get involved? Here are ten ideas to get the ball rolling.

 

  1. Meet the Activities or Recreation Director

    Learn what daily activities are planned. Check out the Calendar of Events to see what planned activities might be of interest to your loved one. Let the director know that your loved one may need a little extra encouragement to join in. Fill him or her in on the hobbies or special interests your loved one enjoys.

  2. Plan to be Involved

    Especially in the beginning, it can be comforting for you to join your loved one for a meal. You can meet the neighbors together and help start conversations.

  3. Developing Friendships 

    Taking the first step is the key to acquiring new friends. Suggest that Mom or Dad enjoy a morning cup of coffee with another resident in a common area. Other suggestions include that he invite a new acquaintance to join him on a walk. Read the newspaper and chat about current events with another resident. Reach out to new residents to make them feel more comfortable.

  4. Pursue Special Interests

    Check the events calendar to learn about the special interest groups that meet during the week. Are music, dance, and the arts of interest? What about arts and crafts? If keeping fit is important, look for daily fitness classes or sporting activities. Was Mom or Dad a “party animal”? Then the social activities or party events may be the right choice.

  5. Never Stop Learning

    Activities that involve the mind may be of more interest. If so, book clubs and discussion groups can be appealing. Look for visiting lecturers or classes on a variety of topics.

  1. Games, Games, and More Games

    There are planned and spontaneous opportunities for playing cards, or board games with neighbors. Puzzles are often left on tables in the recreation room for those to try their hand at fitting in a piece or two whenever the spirit moves them.

  2. Spiritual Groups and Services

    There are often discussion groups that center on spiritual or religious topics. Bible study groups and book clubs. Attending religious services is another way seniors can connect with those they see regularly and who share a belief.

  3. Bus Trips!

    Special excursions may be planned to visit a local attraction. Encourage your loved one to participate. If possible, plan to go along so you can ease any apprehension.

  4. Encourage Hearing and Vision Testing

    If undiagnosed hearing or vision problems remain untreated, seniors often shun social situations because of difficulty communicating or to avoid embarrassment. Treating any hearing or vision issues can be the motivation seniors need to connect socially.

  5. Technology Connects Seniors

    For those who are geographically far from family members, isolation and depression can be eased using technology.  The Internet can connect individuals socially, especially friends and family who are not nearby. Seniors can view photos and can chat or use an application to connect through video phone calls.

 

With your encouragement, your loved one will begin to develop meaningful relationships with residents and staff and will participate in the community, improving the all important quality-of-life.

Let Us Help

If you have questions regarding these or other concerns about assisted living communities in the Aurum Network, contact us at 978-282-9551 or on our website.  To locate a community within the Aurum Network, use our facility locator tool.  

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