ComLink Blog

Recognising Social Isolation and Loneliness


Social isolation and feelings of loneliness affect up to 50% of seniors on a regular basis. These problematic feelings and circumstances create a negative impact on physical and mental health.

With age, it becomes more difficult to do the activities that were once considered “normal”. For some, it is challenging to get dressed in the morning or make a meal. That is why depression is a common health issue found with older adults.

There are various ways to address feelings of loneliness and social isolation for seniors. The most effective methods, involve some type of intervention.

What are the symptoms of loneliness and social isolation?

It can be difficult to recognise the symptoms of isolation and loneliness because:

  • You might feel like loneliness is a natural part of the ageing process.
  • You might be isolated, with few people around to notice your symptoms.
  • You may believe that physical symptoms are not connected to mental health concerns.

Many seniors also find it difficult to speak with strangers about their feelings or ask for help if they need it.

Everyone is unique. That means the symptoms they see when struggling with loneliness and social isolation will also be unique.

Many people describe the experience as a feeling of sadness, grief, or despair. Some may experience unexplained aches and pains.

There may be an increased use of alcohol, slowed movement, and a general lack of motivation.

Some people report sleep disturbances when they feel lonely. Over time, this may lead to issues with chronic insomnia.

If left untreated, seniors may feel a loss of self worth. This feeling almost always leads to the idea that they are a burden to their family.

Thankfully, the symptoms described here will also begin to fade when the cycle of despair breaks.

Choosing to pursue a new hobby, such as crocheting or dancing, will encourage learning opportunities which engage the mind. Adopting a pet promotes unconditional love within the home. Meditation and family support provide help too, as does participating in social programs.

If you would like more information about ComLink’s social events and programs such as the Community Visitors Scheme, contact us today at on 1300 761 011.

 

Share this story


Related Blog Posts

You can read more on our blog page. Click the link below to find more ComLink news and insights.

Visit Blog

Monday 09 September 2019

Seeing Life Through a Different Lens

“Old age is a shipwreck.” – Charles de Gaulle. Most of us live in a world where ageing, and particularly ‘old age’ (whatever that is), is seen through a ‘deficit’ lens, a story of decline, loss, limitation, immobility and constraint. In this way of seeing things, care for the aged becomes a welfare task, helping the unfortunate improvise their way to a life and a lifestyle somehow commensurate with that lofty state enjoyed by the young. And which they have lost. Forever. Sadly. But of course a lens is just that – a lens, a filter. We can look through a telescope through either end, and sometimes the telescope turns out to be a kaleidoscope! What if we were to […]

Thursday 05 September 2019

Six Pillars That Underpin ‘Flourishing’

As our overall health improves and as the age of retirement for many of us moves further and further away, it’s important to think about how the effects of ageing will impact on general ability to work and our overall wellbeing. According to Professor Martin Seligman⁴, one of the founding fathers of positive psychology, there are five pillars that underpin ‘flourishing’. This model, referred as PERMA, was further developed by Professor Emiliya Zhivotovskaya of The Flourishing Centre to include a ‘V’ for vitality, thus creating PERMA-V. The PERMA-V model serves as a practical guide for developing protective thinking and practices as we age. P: Positive Emotions Aim to create moments of positivity in your day. Get out in nature, connect […]

Monday 02 September 2019

Three Tips for Improving Brain Function

By Vicki Doolan from Darkness Bright. Vicki is a AGE-u-cate Trainer, Ageless Grace® Educator & Trainer, Certified Dementia Communication Specialist and Natural Juice Therapist. If you’re concerned about losing brain function as you age you’re not alone. In actual fact this is one of the major health concerns in the world today. Until recently, neuroscientists believed that declining cognition was an inevitable part of ageing. But here’s the good news. They now know that we can not only slow cognitive decline but can in fact continue to create new pathways in the brain right up until we die. And even better news – it’s as easy as child’s play. Revive Your Brain The brain has 5 primary functions: Strategic planning Memory […]

We noticed you're using an old web browser.

Some elements of this website will not appear correctly on older web browsers. Update your browser.

×