Socialization among seniors is very important. Based on research, it helps them improve their mental and emotional health.
While at times, staying socially active is quite challenging for many elderly individuals, there are several ways to help them get more involved and engaged. In this article, the top ways to make them more socially active will be discussed. This may serve as a guide for family members and caregivers, especially those who are based in senior living communities.
Here are the top seven ways on how to help senior become and even stay socially active:
- Attending Community Events
Events and engagements in assisted living communities are great avenues to help seniors stay socially active. As a caregiver and/or family member, try to encourage seniors to attend these gatherings, where they could meet new people and experience the new environment.
In most cases, senior living communities that spearhead these kinds of events incorporate several activities in their programs that would allow each senior individual to be active. Whether it is physical or social, these kinds of pursuits are very helpful.
This is also the reason why many care facilities and institutions always organize events for their residents.
- Find Groups and Clubs To Join
Community events usually happen on special occasions. So, this alone may not be enough to help seniors stay socially active within assisted living facilities.
To expand the network and socialization opportunities, encourage and help seniors in finding groups or organizations designed mainly for the elderly. Activity and passion clubs are widely available in these facilities, and they are great initiators of tie-establishments.
Aside from clubs and organizations, there are several communities that also offer other kinds of group pursuits. In most cases, pet friendly retirement communities, considering that they encourage and promote caring for pets, they incorporate the presence of senior-friendly pets in their programs, which makes their stay much more enjoyable, alongside other residents.
- Taking Continuing Education or Fitness Classes
If you cannot find entertaining and enjoyable groups for seniors within the community, inspire them to take lessons and courses amid their stay. It could be a physically-related type of course program or education or it could also be a fitness class, wherein they could improve their physical health, as well as their social skills.
This is one of the great reasons why many senior communities add various fitness activities in their day-to-day programs. Aside from the fact that it helps seniors with their respective health concerns, it also provides a platform where they can establish new relationships with other seniors.
- Encourage New Hobbies
Caretakers and family members may also encourage new hobbies for seniors. Alongside taking classes and educational programs, introducing the elderly individuals to new interests and hobbies may help them create new ties and friendships with the other participants.
There are tons of activities and hobbies that are great for seniors. Some of the best ones include board games, gardening, dancing, cooking, and gaming.
Apart from the opportunity to gain new friends and buddies, these activities may also benefit their mental, physical, and emotional health. Many facilities and communities today even incorporate some of these tools within their respective vicinities so that residents may be encouraged to take upon them from time to time.
- Joining a Senior Center or Community Group
Several senior living homes, even the faith-based retirement communities, feature senior centers that welcome all residents. Most of the time, these centers host various events and activities, similar to what most groups and organizations do in senior communities.
The events and activities may include but are not limited to day trips and tours, film screenings, book readings by groups, sports, and game nights. Through these avenues, all of the participating seniors could meet others who have the same interests as theirs. As a result, this gives them the opportunity to mingle and socialize with others, a dynamic that may turn into great friendships within the community.
- Living With Pets
When choosing for reliable and effective senior communities, try to look out for those that welcome and encourage pets with the residents. Taking care of pets is a great and long-term activity for seniors that may further improve their social skills.
Aside from the day-to-day care for these furry friends, some groups and communities also host mini inter-competitions for pets. These kinds of activities can certainly help seniors make new friendships and ties with others.
Also, experts said that having pets typically allows seniors to move from their comfort zones. It is challenging, though, to take care of pets. Keep in mind that there are tons of factors that caregivers and family members must consider first when having a pet for elderly individuals. There is the aspect of constant caring for the pets, as well as the commitment of the senior to keep their pets safe and sound.
This is why communities have certain regulations and rules when it comes to bringing pets within the facilities. Ensure to research first all the guidelines when intending to bring pets with the seniors.
- Enjoying Time With a Senior Companion
Having senior companions is another best way for elderly individuals to stay socially active. It is worth noting that these companions do not only provide help and assistance when it comes to cleaning, cooking, and their daily activities, as well. As it happens, senior companions are trained and bonded, which makes them very beneficial for seniors in terms of their social skills.
Companion care is also about ensuring the condition and status of the senior’s emotional and mental health. They make sure that the elderly will feel connected and supported all the time.
Whatever the seniors’ needs, companions could become another helping hand. Whether it is about transportation, simple engagement, or even just the presence of a friendly face within the surrounding, senior companions provide personalized services and attention.
Many people find it challenging to find ways for seniors to stay socially engaged and active. But, with the help of today’s advancements and improvements, there are already a lot of options to resolve this kind of concern. In the end, these seven ways are just only some of the best methods and ideas to help seniors stay and even become more socially active within their assisted living communities.