How to Prevent Social Isolation in Seniors



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Posted on

Aug 13, 2023


Minnesota - Twin Cities Metro Area

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Too often, seniors feel that they have no purpose once they’re retired. Giving back to a community instills that sense of purpose and offers an opportunity for conversation.  There are oodles of senior programs and courses for every interest. From painting and singing to yoga and pickleball, there’s something for everyone!

Adopt a Pet

Not everyone enjoys human interaction as much, and that’s okay! To prevent social isolation for seniors that are more introverted, consider a furry friend instead. Like getting involved, pets instill a sense of purpose. It’s something to take care of beyond themselves.  It’s difficult to feel lonely when sharing your space with a cute, cuddly cat or dog. There is also scientific evidence that pets reduce stress!

Easy Transportation

A major culprit for social isolation in seniors is the inability to get around town. It’s difficult to make new friends or see old ones when you can’t get to them.  Try to schedule some reliable transportation for seniors that can’t drive themselves anymore. When family members are too busy, there are other avenues to consider.  Check your city to learn about discounted rides for seniors. Sometimes, it’s even free!

Technology Classes

The internet has become a massive tool for keeping in touch with loved ones, finding entertainment, and staying up to date on news. However, some aging adults don’t understand how to use it.  Try a technology class! These are inexpensive classes that teach senior citizens how to use computers, phones, and web browsers.  Family members can sit down with their parents and grandparents to teach them as well! Being able to chat with familiar faces that are miles away helps to prevent loneliness in seniors.

New Hobbies

It’s never too late to pick up a new hobby. Keeping the brain active is good for overall health.  Learning something new puts us in a vulnerable position where we must ask for help. So, it’s a great way to make new friends and inspire conversations!  Choosing a new hobby is something that anyone can do, regardless of mobility. Some senior citizens just need help learning what’s out there!  If those don’t fit your needs, there are more options! Some other activities for isolated seniors are…

Senior aerobics

Joining a church

Seeking out a therapist

Visiting family

These ideas keep the body moving, continue forming relationships, and offer an outlet for emotional needs. It’s so important not to relegate ourselves or our loved ones to a room, a chair, and a TV.  For some, the best option is to live on-site, where people can help and communicate all the time. Learn more about Sholom’s assisted living, and contact us today! 

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The Pawsitive Health Benefits of Owning a Pet for Seniors

For older adults, life can become quieter and lonely as the years go by. One way to combat this life change is by owning a pet. The health benefits of owning a pet for seniors far outweigh the work that goes into owning one.Our furry, feathery, or even scaly family members can provide a variety of physical, mental, and emotional benefits. The bond between seniors and their pets goes far beyond mere companionship. Here are some of the top health benefits of owning a pet for seniorsReduces Loneliness And IsolationAs they get older, many seniors experience feelings of social isolation and loneliness. This can lead to depression and other significant health problems. Having a pet, whether its a dog, cat, or even a bird, provides companionship and helps to reduce these feelings of isolation. Pets are loyal and loving, offering unconditional affection that can significantly improve your mental and emotional well-being.Increases Physical ActivityOne of the biggest benefits of owning a pet, particularly an active dog, is that it forces you to be physical. Dogs need to be walked, which in turn encourages regular physical activity on your part. Seniors with dogs are more likely to go for daily walks or play with them in the yard. Even this little bit of physical activity helps maintain mobility, joint flexibility, and cardiovascular health. In addition, physical activity of any kind leads to a stronger immune system and a reduced risk of chronic diseases like heart disease and diabetes.Lowers Stress And AnxietySimply looking at a picture of a little puppy or kitten is almost guaranteed to put a smile on your face. Studies show that petting a dog or cat can trigger the release of the mood-regulating hormone serotonin. It also increases the feel good hormone dopamine while decreasing the level of the stress hormone cortisol. This fluctuation helps to reduce stress and anxiety levels. Additionally, a pets rhythmic, soothing presence can help lower blood pressure, contributing to overall cardiovascular health.Boosts Mental AlertnessInteracting with pets can stimulate mental alertness and cognitive function. While training your pet and teaching them tricks helps to boost their mental capacity, it also helps to maintain your mental acuity. This mental stimulation can delay the onset of cognitive decline and reduce your risk of dementia and Alzheimers disease.Fosters A Sense Of PurposeMost of us work hard and look forward to the day we can finally hang up our work boots and retire. However, when that day finally comes, many seniors often experience a diminished sense of purpose. Owning a pet can give you back a sense of responsibility and purpose. Caring for a pet requires routine tasks like feeding, grooming, and exercise, providing structure to your days and a reason to get out of bed in the morning.Enhances Social ConnectionsA study has shown pet owners are more apt to meet their neighbors than non-pet owners. Pets make great icebreakers for seniors when they are out on walks or at pet-friendly facilities. This can give you an opportunity to connect with others and strike up a conversation.Reduces The Risk Of Allergies And AsthmaAlthough it sounds like it would be the opposite, having a pet has been found to reduce the risk of developing allergies and asthma the older we get. This can be an added health benefit for seniors who have had pets throughout their lives.Get Your Purrfect CompanionOwning a pet can do wonders for your health and well-being. These little bundles of joy enrich seniors lives in ways that extend far beyond companionship. The emotional, physical, and mental health benefits of having a pet cannot be argued or overlooked. Seniors who share their lives with a furry friend often experience reduced stress, increased physical activity, enhanced emotional well-being, and a greater sense of purpose. This article was submitted by VIPCare.  For more information visit the website:

The Power of Hobbies: Finding Joy and Purpose in Senior Life

In the golden years of life, the pursuit of hobbies emerges as a powerful means of discovering joy and purpose. Beyond the notion of leisure, hobbies become a source of fulfillment, offering seniors a tangible way to engage with life's richness. Whether it's rediscovering a lifelong passion or exploring new interests, the world of hobbies provides a canvas for self-expression and personal growth. From gardening and painting to photography and book clubs, the possibilities are diverse and tailored to individual preferences. These activities not only fill the days with meaningful pursuits but also foster a sense of accomplishment and identity, crucial elements in maintaining a positive outlook on life.The transformative power of hobbies in senior life extends beyond the personal realm, influencing social connections and overall well-being. Joining hobby groups or participating in community events centered around shared interests creates avenues for new friendships and a vibrant social life. The joy derived from pursuing hobbies ripples into improved mental health, combating feelings of isolation that can sometimes accompany aging. In essence, the cultivation of hobbies in senior life is a testament to the enduring capacity for discovery, learning, and joy, reaffirming that the later years can be a time of continued growth, purpose, and fulfillment.

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Dealing with loss in the senior years requires a nuanced and compassionate approach. One essential aspect is connecting seniors with accessible resources that address their specific needs. Local community centers, bereavement support groups, and online platforms can serve as invaluable outlets for sharing experiences and finding solace. Recognizing the unique challenges seniors face, such as the loss of long-time companions or the impact of age-related health issues on their grieving process, is crucial. By fostering an environment that acknowledges these challenges and provides tailored resources, we can empower seniors to navigate grief with resilience and a sense of community.Moreover, offering counseling options geared towards the elderly is essential. Specialized therapists who understand the intricacies of senior grief can provide a safe space for expression and healing. Group therapy sessions, either in person or virtually, can create a supportive community where seniors can share their feelings and learn from others who have faced similar losses. By encouraging seniors to explore counseling options, we not only acknowledge the importance of their emotional well-being but also provide them with the tools to cope with grief in a healthy and constructive manner.

Local Services By This Author

Sholom-Knollwood Place Apartments

Independent Living 3630 Phillips Parkway, Saint Louis Park, Minnesota, 55426

West campus in St. Louis Park, Knollwood Place Apartments is part of a vibrant and welcoming community. Situated close to shopping, banking and recreational activities, Knollwood Place offers a distinct neighborhood feel. Theres always something to do or someone to visit with at KPA. A spacious outdoor patio with gazebo overlooks beautiful Lake LChaim behind Knollwood Placean ideal spot for a leisurely walk. Convenient indoor walkways link all campus buildings together so friends and loved ones are just a few steps away!A SPECIAL COMMUNITYKnollwood Place offers 153 beautifully appointed one- and two-bedroom apartment homes. Monthly rent includes: All utilities except electricity, telephone and private Internet connection Complimentary continental breakfast Monday through Friday Scheduled van transportation for recreational outings, shopping and medical appointments Access to social worker for information and referrals A variety of events and programs on and off campus Complimentary laundry facilities Complimentary Satellite TV Limited access entry Spiritual enrichment servicesADDITIONAL SERVICES AVAILABLE FOR A FEE Housekeeping services Access to scheduled Sholom Home Care services On-campus short-term rehabilitation services PRIME KOSHER CATERING serves authentic menus and delicious kosher meals Monday Friday, offering: - Complimentary Continental Breakfast - Nosh Deli featuring soups, salads, sandwiches and specials - Willows Grill offers 4-course dinner with a variety of flavors from around the world Heated underground parking garage Guest suites for overnight visitorsBUILDING AMENITIES: Large parking area for visitors Complimentary storage lockers based upon availability Hair salon/Barbershop Tenant Resource Center with Internet access Fitness Center Community Rooms for activities/private parties/ gatherings Part of a large senior living campus 24-hour emergency maintenance available

Sholom-Ackerberg Family West Campus

Skilled Nursing 3620 Phillips Pkwy, Saint Louis Park, Minnesota, 55426

Sholom Home West is an integral part of Sholoms over 100-year legacy of serving Twin Cities seniors. Located on the Ackerberg Family Sholom West campus, Sholom Home West is connected by indoor walkways to other Sholom care facilitiesKnollwood Place Apartments, Roitenberg Family Assisted Living Residence and Menorah West Apartments.  Sholom West offers a wide array of services ranging from short-term rehabilitation tolong-term care in a supportive environment. Sixty percent of Sholom Wests residents stay less than 30 days before returning home. A comprehensive, individualized care plan is developed and implemented for each residentby an interdisciplinary team of professionals.BUILDING AMENITIES 139-bed facility Beauty salon/Barber shop Deli Library Chapeloffering Jewish and Christian services Outdoor courtyard Community rooms available for resident/family events Recreational, music and pet therapies Kosher meals and snacks On-site Rabbi and visiting clergySHOLOM WEST OFFERS Specialized short-term, post-acute rehabilitation units Hospice Admissions from hospital seven days per week, 24-hours per day Medical director consultation Multi-discipline care planning Medication administration Individualized care for Alzheimers and other memory impairments Specialized dietary services provided by in-house registered dietician Daily housekeeping Linen and personal laundry service On-site therapy clinics for physical, occupational and speech therapies On-site x-ray and lab services On-site podiatry, dental, optometry, orthotic and audiology services Outpatient therapy also available

Sholom-The David Feinberg Aquatics Center

Aquatic Classes & Therapy 730 Kay Avenue, Saint Paul, Minnesota, 55102

Conveniently located near Saint Pauls Highland Park neighborhood on the Shaller Family Sholom East Campus, the David Feinberg Vitality & Aquatics Center has computerized fitness equipment and a warm-water therapy pool designed to promote personal fitness and wellness. The Feinberg Vitality & Aquatics Center is open to the public!Operating Hours Effective for February 2023 Pool Hotline: 651-328-2049 Monday 8:30-3pm OPEN Swim3:15pm-4pm Arthritis Pool CLASS: (Please sign up ahead of time as limit of 8 participants)4:15pm -7pm OPEN Swim Tuesday8:30-7pm OPEN Swim Wednesday8:30-3pm OPEN Swim3:15pm-4pm Arthritis Pool CLASS: (Please sign up ahead of time as limit of 8 participants) Thursday8:30-3pm OPEN Swim3:15pm-4pm Arthritis Pool CLASS: (Please sign up ahead of time as limit of 8 participants)4:15pm -7pm OPEN Swim Friday  8:30-2PM OPEN SwimSaturday10-4pm OPEN Swim Vitality Center (Julie): 651-328-2050 Pool Hotline: 651-328-2049 Operating hours subject to change based on pool condition/maintenance/staffing.  Please check pool hotline for any daily updates.Download and update your member information and membership agreement & payment form today.Download COVID-19 protocols and other information for visiting the David Feinberg Vitality and Aquatics CenterStaff are available to instruct regarding using the equipment in the Garelick Fitness Center & Sinykin Wellness Room by appointment.Various exercise equipmentStability ballsWeighted dumbbellsTreadmillYoga matsNintendo WiiAdditionally, the soothing warm-water therapy pool is an ideal therapeutic environment for persons of every age and ability.Comfortable warm-water poolEasy ramp accessLarge private showers and changing roomsAquatic Therapy with Physical TherapistsUse the pool for fitness or therapyAddress:730 Kay AvenueSt. Paul, MN 55102Membership Phone:(651) 328-2050Aquatic Therapy Phone:(651) 328-2050Pool Hotline (Alerts and Updates):(651) 328-2049DownloadsFeinberg Aquatics and Vitality Center BrochureFeinberg Aquatics and Vitality Center Program Information