As social beings, interacting with others is a part of our lives. Social interaction helps us form bonds that support and help us through countless aspects of everyday life. However, as we grow older, these social interactions tend to get less frequent, which can result in social isolation and loneliness.
According to recent research studies, Canada is expected to have approximately 1 million individuals diagnosed with Dementia by 2030. Currently, 1 out of 10 seniors in Canada live with dementia, with this ratio also expected to increase in the coming years. This makes dementia a growing concern for caregivers and family members who have senior loved ones that live on their own.
As dementia can cause a decline in cognitive functioning, it becomes essential for caregivers and family members to be diligent when it comes to keeping seniors as socially active as possible. Having an active social life allows for better cognitive health and helps reduce feelings of loneliness and isolation which can further worsen the disease.
In this article, we will go through the benefits of social interaction for seniors with dementia and look at how healthcare providers, caregivers, and family members can plan a more comprehensive approach toward reducing the progression of dementia in seniors.
How Social Interaction Impacts Cognitive Health?
When seniors continue to have social interactions, it can greatly benefit their cognitive functioning. This is because social interactions help form meaningful relationships while and stimulating the mind. Interacting with others also helps improve memory, enhance problem-solving skills, and promote overall cognitive well-being.
Seniors who have regular social interactions have a reduced rate of cognitive decline and a lower likelihood of developing dementia symptoms. Social engagements can also help reduce the progression of the disease and promote better emotional well-being.
Thus, encouraging seniors to stay socially active and fostering social connections is essential for supporting their cognitive health.
4 Benefits of Social Interaction for Seniors with Dementia
There are plenty of benefits of social interaction for seniors with dementia. Even if a senior is having trouble remembering things or going through mood swings it is important to interact with them by speaking to them in a calm and composed manner.
Social interactions allow seniors to open up to others about their grievances and teach them how to better express themselves with confidence. It also helps improve mood, increase self-esteem, stimulate the mind, and help reduce anxiety.
Social interactions can also help with memory and recognition. It can help seniors recall old memories and help them strengthen their relationships with others. Additionally, social interaction with people outside of their homes also gives seniors a sense of normalcy allowing them to meet people of their age or reconnect with old friends.
- Social Interaction Helps Seniors Maintain Their Independence
Seniors with dementia can experience many mental health problems that include anxiety, and depression. This increases the amount of care and help they need.
Providing seniors with adequate opportunities to interact with people where they can share their feelings and emotions can reduce stress levels and frustration, while also making them feel heard; helping bolster self-confidence.
- Creates Opportunities for New Relations
One of the benefits of social interaction is that it allows seniors to form new relationships and allows them to be active members of society. Making regular visits to extended family or colleagues from their past can bring back memories and a sense of belonging.
Attending social events such as gatherings, tea parties, and dinners can also help seniors meet friends from the past and make them feel young again which can greatly help improve mood and alleviate depression.
- Allows Seniors To Showcase Their Talents
Introducing group activities suitable for seniors with dementia, such as music, art therapy, bingo and more can allow seniors to express themselves and show off their talent. These activities help boost confidence and also offer a chance for healthy competition with others.
Playing games or sports that are age suitable also promotes a healthier lifestyle which stimulates their cognitive abilities and improves mental health.
- Community Involvement & Volunteer Programs
Social interaction also includes community involvement, whereby seniors can help contribute to the community via volunteering programs.
Engaging in volunteer activities can provide seniors with a sense of purpose, social contact, and a chance to contribute to and improve their community. It can also help maintain or slow down cognitive decline.
While it is important to remember that seniors with dementia have some limited abilities, there are many volunteering opportunities tailored to their needs. Volunteer work can help seniors with positive reinforcement and go a long way in keeping them active, engaged, and social/
How Technology Can Increase Social Interaction For Seniors With Dementia?
In the late stages of the disease, the symptoms of dementia, such as memory loss, can become severe. In such cases, seniors can take advantage of technology such as video calls and social media to maintain social interaction in their daily life.
Smartphones and tablets with internet connectivity allow 24/7 access to family and friends. Playing games on such devices can also help with improving cognitive functioning and so, even seniors who cannot travel too far from their homes can still stay socially engaged through online means.
The Support and Resources Available for Caregivers of Seniors with Dementia
One of the biggest benefits of social interaction is that it allows seniors with dementia to talk to their healthcare providers. Caregivers can make use of such opportunities to introduce seniors in their care to support groups, resources, and organizations that can help them stay active and social.
This way caregivers can share the caregiving responsibility with reliable resources without compromising on the emotional, mental, and physical well-being of their seniors.
Support groups also ensure that seniors can integrate these resources and opportunities into their daily activities and can coherently communicate their needs to their healthcare providers so they are better able to devise a plan that can be effective in reducing the progression of the disease.
For Top-Rated Medical Systems For Seniors Visit Northwood Intouch
Seniors can live an active independent lifestyle if they have the love and support of those around them. There are plenty of precautions one can take to ensure that their loved ones aren’t restricted from doing the things they love.
Our medical systems allow seniors to live an active and social lifestyle while giving caregivers peace of mind. To learn more about our senior care products contact Northwood Intouch at +1 (902) 492-3346 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.