Research confirms that social connections are a fundamental human need and crucial to well-being. The 'loneliness epidemic' can be a significant risk to health as we age. In Timiskaming, 31% of the seniors live alone. As our district is wide spread and highly rural, many older adults in Timiskaming may be at risk of being socially isolated.
November is Fall Prevention Month in Ontario and the Stay on Your Feet Coalition it Timiskaming is reminding older adults that social connections are key to healthy aging! Studies show that people who have close connections and relationship live longer, cope better with health conditions and experience less depression.
Some tips to prevent loneliness and stay connected include:
- Join Community Activities – consider a local seniors club, a place or worship or congregate dining such as Diners Club.
- Volunteer – not only will it help your community, it’s a great way to meet new people.
- Use Technology – a great way to stay in touch with loves ones who live away. Share pictures, have video conversations, join online support groups or clubs.
- Take a Class – learn something new as a way to keep and active mind and make friends with common interests.
- Be Active – not only does this reduce the risk of falling, it’s an amazing way to meet people.
- Join Seniors’ Centre Without Walls– a free program that can be accessed with only a phone. A local community centre from the comfort of your home where you can learn interesting information and create new friendships.
Social Connections are Key to Healthy Aging (One-pager)
Guide to Exercise Opportunities for Older Adults in Timiskaming - this tool outlines many free group exercise programs available in the communities across the district.