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Aging Well

Aging Well  3/31/17Limited social connections can lead to isolation and loneliness for all of us. However, older people who live alone, have health concerns or experience a loss are especially vulnerable.

Jane Strommen, NDSU Extension Gerontology Specialist, reports how scientists are finding that our interaction with other people - friends, family, neighbors, co-workers, clubs and religious groups - can have powerful effects on our health and well-being. Persistent loneliness and social isolation have been linked to poorer health and increased risk for depression, dementia and early death, just to name a few issues. Perhaps in your own experience, or based on your own observations, you’ve come to the same conclusion as the scientists.

Here are three suggestions that can make a difference in preventing isolation:

  • Be physically active. Take a walk, clean out a closet or join a class at a local gym.
  • Consider volunteering.  Helping others can bring meaning into your days and make you feel part of something larger than yourself.
  • Engage with technology to stay connected with family and friends via Facebook, texts and emails.

Taking small steps to connect with others and keep a positive outlook can make a big difference in warding off loneliness and isolation. NDSU Extension has free resources and information to help you and those you care about be successful at aging well.  Visit https://www.ag.ndsu.edu/sargentcountyextension and click on “Aging and Wellness” in the left margin of the web page. 

Source: https://www.ag.ndsu.edu/aging/posts/ways-to-avoid-loneliness-and-isolation

Photo Source: https://pixabay.com/en/crafts-casal-elderly-ceramics-279580/ (downloaded 4/4/17)


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