Saying Goodbye to Social Isolation


Senior isolation and loneliness is a growing concern. One-fourth of adults 65 and over report feeling isolated regularly. These feelings can have a detrimental effect on physical health and new studies suggest there could be a link between isolation and dementia.

According to Neurology, a medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology, older people who have little social contact with others may be more likely to have a loss of overall brain volume when compared to people with more frequent social contact. This brain atrophy is well-documented in people who suffer from dementia.

In fact, social isolation is associated with about a 50% increased risk of dementia.

Researchers are careful to point out that the study does not prove that social isolation causes brain shrinkage; it only shows an association. 

Fortunately, there are things you can do to prevent social isolation for yourself or the senior in your life.

If loneliness diminishes your quality of life, it stands to reason that social connections can improve it – and research backs that up.

Finding Connection in Senior Living Communities

Many Senior Star residents say that having so many ways to interact with people adds joy to their days and makes their lives incredibly rich. Between events, activities, clubs, dining venues, and having neighbors the same age, they discover new friends that feel like family.

Here are some simple, small steps you can take today to make more meaningful connections with others.

Make Time for Face-to-Face Time

Phone calls, emails, and FaceTime are nice, especially when friends or family live far away. But, it’s important to have in-person interactions too. In fact, a 2015 study found that the mental health benefits of regular face-to-face social interactions reduce the risk of depression.

Things you can try:

  • Use a common area to meet with a friend for a coffee or tea date.
  • Invite someone to have lunch or dinner out on the town or in the community dining room.
  • Make time for small talk as you go about your day.

Explore Your Interests Through Group Activities

Even if you don’t like big groups, there are ways to be involved that add purpose and fun to your day. 

Things you can try:

  • Check out a movie night, a Mixology event, or other fun activity in your community. 
  • Explore options at your local church or synagogue, such as group studies, choirs or service projects.
  • Add in some friendly competition: a regular bridge, poker, or game night. 
  • Participate in a book club or sewing group or cooking class.

Give Back To Your Community

Volunteering provides a variety of benefits for seniors, both physical and mental. In addition to promoting physical activity, volunteering keeps your brain active and your heart full of gratitude. 

Many Senior Star Residents choose to give their time to worthy causes such as Reading Partners, a program designed to promote literacy in elementary schools.

Things you can try:

  • Join the Gardening Club as they plant flowers in community spaces. 
  • Sign up for community service projects.
  • Look for ways to serve through faith-based organizations.

Focus On Your Health

One of the greatest problems with isolation and loneliness is that it causes people to ignore their health and well-being. Concentrating on your health can help you meet other people and form friendships.

Things to try:

  • Ask a friend or acquaintance to join you on a walk.
  • Try one of Senior Star’s signature programs such as Laughter Yoga or Zumba Gold®. 
  • Ask a neighbor to play pickleball or another social sport.

As you can see, there is no shortage of opportunities to engage with others in Senior Star communities. 

So, say goodbye to social isolation and say hello to meaningful relationships when you join a warm and welcoming community of seniors 

Read more:

Five Steps to Walk Away From Loneliness 

Four Ways Community Involvement Impacts Your Health 

Contact us to learn more.