Social isolation among seniors is everyone’s concern. We all have elderly family members, friends, neighbors, people we may see every day or rarely, who may be suffering from loneliness without us even being aware of it. It is important to talk to seniors, engage with them, help them accomplish difficult tasks or simply share a smile.
As a society, we must change our perception of the elderly to create meaningful social bonds and show solidarity. They deserve nothing less and now is time to act.
If you would like to help, here are a few simple things you can do:
- Become a volunteer for Little Brothers;
- Make a phone call;
- Help a neighbour with shopping or other everyday tasks;
- Offer small treats (homemade cookies, flowers, coffee or tea, ice cream, etc.);
- Suggest going for a walk;
- Look at a photo album;
- Send birthday greetings or a card for a special day such as Valentine’s Day, Easter or Christmas;
- Bring your pet for a visit;
- Play a board game or talk over a coffee;
- Offer clothing or a cozy blanket;
- Any other gestures or little touches that matter.
The consequences of loneliness among seniors: a serious issue
Regardless of the causes of social isolation among older adults, the impact on their physical and mental health is devastating. When a person surpasses a certain degree of isolation, it becomes almost impossible for them to maintain any social connections. These people begin to feel helpless and overwhelmed, stuck between four walls that seem to get closer every day.
This issue is a real problem in Quebec, where a third of the population over 75 lives alone. You can help us improve our efforts to better meet the increasing challenges of a growing population.
We thank you for your help.