The Importance of Companionship

Since late winter 2020 when we became aware of the threat posed by the COVID-19 virus, all of us have become aware of the side effects of chronic isolation. On the lighter side, we all joke about wearing pajamas all day, eating too much, and trying all sorts of goofy things to pass the time, and we connect with our fellow humans via social media and phone. Still, the isolation and boredom can weight heavily upon us at times. Many people work from home, which certainly helps to alleviate the “aloneness” at least for a while. But what of the elderly who live alone, are not employed, and find themselves increasingly isolated with far too much time on their hands?

A recent study of the effects of living alone on the elderly found that the risk of smoking and eating salty foods (which contribute to hypertension) was almost double for elderly men living alone as apposed to living with a spouse and/or younger generations. For women, the risk of smoking and an inactive lifestyle was almost double in the same scenario. Perhaps even more concerning is the suicide rate among the isolated elderly. The majority of people who attempt suicide suffer from untreated or under treated depression, and for seniors, the list of contributing factors to depression is lengthy. Experiencing the loss of multiple loved ones, chronic pain, feeling like a burden to others, gradual or sudden loss of senses such of vision and hearing, financial problems, food insecurity, and being homebound or isolated all contribute to depression in the senior population. As people grow old, many of the people you knew have passed, and the change associated with having outlived them can be very depressing. Coping with the aging process becomes hard, and the associated suicide rate among the elderly (approximately 18%) is a real threat.

So what’s the answer when your elderly loved one lives alone? Perhaps they’re independent but you’re concerned about the amount of time they spend isolated. You work, your spouse works, and the kids have their own activities. Maybe your best effort at spending time with Mom or Dad just isn’t enough. 

Magnolia Grace Senior Care offers a wonderful solution through their “Buddy on Call” program. Magnolia Grace can offer a pre-screened and vetted professional as a companion to your senior loved one, whether for just an afternoon, or on a more regular basis. A “Buddy on Call” can help with shopping, trips to museums or restaurants, or just visiting at home. With a Magnolia Grace Senior Care buddy, your senior loved one has company with which to visit and talk, helping him or her to feel less isolated and alone, which can lead to better physical and mental health.

In addition to the “Buddy on Call”, Magnolia Grace Senior Care has many other programs that can be tailored to meet the needs of your senior loved one. by utilizing the many services offered by Magnolia Grace Senior Care, you can rest assured that your elderly parent’s or grandparent’s needs are being met by caring, compassionate, professional caregivers with your loved one’s best interests at heart.

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