As you get older, a lot of things begin to change and cause you to miss out on activities that you once loved. You may not be able to be such an avid runner or to stroll along the shops for hours on end. Sometimes, you have to sacrifice some of your favorite activities in exchange for things that are better for your health and physical well-being. However, should social supports be one of those things that are sacrificed?
If you aren’t sure how social support plays into your overall well-being, here are just a few of the things that you may want to consider. Signing up for a fitness class or learning something new with a friend might be just what the doctor ordered after all.
Is social support really necessary?
Social support is definitely something that should stick around, even as we advance in years. Think about how you feel after you spend time with a good friend or attend a class that you care about. That feeling of camaraderie can significantly boost your spirits, making you feel livelier than before. The evidence isn’t just anecdotal though. Modern research is clearly demonstrating that social supports can improve the lives of aging adults.
The National Institutes of Health conducted a study that proved how important social supports are. Older adults who reported having fewer social supports tended to have poorer health. The researchers determined that having less social support could be a predictor of mortality among those they interviewed.
Older adults do need to have someone around to help them adjust to the stress of aging. It can take a toll on them psychologically and physically. In fact, having other people around can be useful in combating issues like depression and anxiety which often come with the aging process. We simply have to figure out where this support should come from.
Where does social support come from?
Many people propose that older adults should receive their social support from family members. While this is sometimes true, family can’t always be present to help an older adult through all of life’s trials. They do have their own lives to live that can interfere with the support they are able to offer to others. Social support can come from family members to some extent, but we have to start thinking more about community-based services.
Social support can come from any place where you feel connected to other people around you. This can mean a fitness class, art group, travel club, golfing league, or any other type of activities sponsored in your area. A senior center often has a great community where you can spend time and connect with others who are similar to yourself.
Spending time with other people is essential for your mental and physical health. Think of a place or activity that you love to help you decide where your social support should come from. At Partners for Home, we offer trustful home care services to help you get the support you need. Give us a call today to see how we can help you stay home for longer!