Fewer friendships, limited opportunities to participate in activities and finding it more challenging to meet new people can occur as we grow older. The risk of becoming lonely or socially isolated can also increase, resulting in a negative impact on health.
And this may be more common than you think. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one report discovered that more than one-third of adults aged 45+ felt lonely and nearly one-fourth of those aged 65 and older were socially isolated.
Health risks from loneliness and isolation have been found to:
- Rival those equal to smoking, obesity and physical inactivity
- Increase the risk of dementia by 50%
- Increase the risk of heart disease 29% and stroke by 32%
- Increase rates of depression and anxiety
- There is a solution, however. One that not only provides an age-friendly residence and access to activities, healthy dining, and transportation – but also an almost guaranteed way to meet and make new friends.
A senior living community.
Download our complimentary Successful Transitions guide to learn more about making the move to senior living.
7 ways to make friends in senior living
If you or a loved one has been struggling to meet new people or want to increase the number of meaningful relationships, making friends in senior living is simple. Take a look at the following opportunities awaiting you in senior living communities:
1. Meeting at activities of interest
Senior living communities are known for their monthly calendars of scheduled activities. With such a wide variety of choices, residents can easily find something appealing.
But perhaps more importantly are the opportunities to meet others who share similar interests. Participating in activities is a natural way to be introduced to the residents and begin making friends in a new senior living community.
2. Engaging at social events
Communities understand the importance of remaining engaged and the impact it can have on both physical and cognitive health. They schedule several social events as an easy way for the residents to get to know each other – and have fun.
While there are many opportunities to make friends in senior living, attending social gatherings can be one of the most enjoyable ways to begin meeting new companions.
3. Getting fit with friends
We all know the importance of remaining in shape but motivation can be a real challenge for many. However, making friends in senior living can result in keeping up with a regular routine and making even exercise more fun.
A senior living community offers you the chance to accomplish two goals at once. When remaining active in fitness classes alongside new friends, residents will enjoy the social benefits while gaining the advantages of exercise.
4. Sharing a meal and a story
Residents enjoy the wide menu selections of chef-prepared meals. Some communities also offer different venues, providing a choice of where to eat as well.
But sharing a meal together is another easy opportunity to make friends in senior living. Joining in the conversation with the other residents and beginning to learn more about each other is the first step in building meaningful relationships.
5. Crossing paths
A senior living community is just that – a community. Much like what is experienced wherever we live, there are many opportunities to stop and chat with those who cross our paths daily.
Whether a resident is retrieving mail, on the way to an activity or along the pathway for a morning walk, making friends in senior living is simple. Faces will soon be recognized and the names that go along with them remembered.
6. The staff is there to help
If you or a loved one does find it difficult to meet others or is struggling to form new friendships, remember the community’s staff is always there to help.
Not only do they know all the residents, but they can suggest meeting those with whom you already share something in common. The staff can recommend certain activities or even arrange to introduce you to others. New residents will soon delight in how easy it really is to make friends in senior living.
7. Ask a friend or family member for support
Even with all the planned opportunities to meet others, some new residents can find it difficult to strike up a conversation or join in an activity. Asking a family member or friend to support the efforts is often a great way to smooth the transition.
The reassurance of a familiar face can greatly put new community members at ease when making friends in senior living. Helping with introductions or conversations can boost their confidence in getting to know others.
The Charleston Senior Living Community
Locally owned and operated, we offer personalized care by our dedicated team members. Setting a new standard in Assisted Living and Memory Care, we don’t define our residents by their limitations or illness but instead believe in focusing on the positive and the possibility.
The Charleston Senior Community includes private apartments for assisted living residents and for those living with Alzheimer’s or dementia. Your loved ones will benefit from our attention to detail, routine health assessments, delicious dining and daily activity programs as we support everyone to live their best life.
Consider a few of our amenities:
- Chef-led dining program
- Community movie theater
- Live entertainment
- Outdoor patio
- Social lounges
If you or your family is thinking about Assisted living or Memory care, we hope you will consider The Charleston Senior Community. We are a trusted resource and are here to answer any questions, contact us today.
We also invite you to download our complimentary Successful Transitions guide to learn more about making the move to senior living.