Elderly people have long faced issues surrounding loneliness and isolation. Unfortunately, moving away from full time work can cause this, as can the death of a partner. For single elderly people and those that have been widowed, life can become quite lonely indeed. In the United States, this is a growing problem, given the fact that the elderly population itself is very much on the rise.
As a matter of fact, the data that has been gathered on this subject more than backs up this claim. This data shows quite clearly that the elderly population is on the rise, something that can be attributed to the fact that Baby Boomers are now entering their elderly years. In just a couple decades, more than 14 million people will be over the age of 85 in the United States alone. And even more people still fall within the elderly category, as it tends to include everyone who is at or above the age of 65, meaning that millions more people will also be considered elderly by this time as well.
Fortunately, this loneliness is something that can be managed and mitigated if the issue is taken seriously and enough people are made aware of it. And there are a number of ways in which elderly people can do so. For one thing, it is possible to stay in the workforce for longer, something that can also give people the chance to save up some extra funds for their retirement years. This option is becoming more and more commonplace with the passage of time, and up to one fifth of all elderly people now continue working past the age of 65, often in a full time capacity.
Even if one does not continue to work in the same way that they did before reaching their elderly years, there are still a great many ways to stay active and focused and engaged with the world. Pursuing a volunteer opportunity is one such way – and a very common one, at that. After all, up to half of all elderly adults volunteer in some way. Some people will certainly put in more hours and dedicate more time to it than others, but really any form of volunteering can make a difference in the long run. Volunteering not only does good for the world, but helps to make up for lost social interaction that people would have had while working. Therefore, many elderly people find putting their efforts towards volunteering very worthwhile indeed.
More and more elderly people are pursuing dating as well, particularly if they were already single or had lost a spouse some time in the past. Online dating and app dating have made it all the easier for people to date, even once they have reached their elderly years. And the numbers of people using dating sites are on the rise, particularly seniors. As a matter of fact, the data on the subject shows that more than 10% of all senior citizens (around 12% of them, to be just a bit more specific) actually use various dating apps and websites.
Simply choosing to live in a senior living community can also increase social interaction. Senior housing in independent living communities has become more and more popular with time, and typically requires residents to be over the age of 55 before moving in. Living in senior housing is something that many people have to adjust to. After all, most people want to stay in their own homes as long as they are able to do so. However, senior living communities can make it all the easier for people all throughout the country to find important human connection. And this is certainly not something to be underestimated. Through various senior living communities, elderly people are able to find themselves a true community, something that can be hugely important if they have been living alone.
And senior living communities are still very independent spaces. There is no doubt about it that senior living communities are far from nursing homes, which is most certainly a very important distinction to be able to make. For many, senior living communities are well worth making the change.