As you get older, your circle grows smaller. You are generally not out and about meeting as many people as you were when you were younger- health problems and disabilities can mean getting out is more difficult so it’s no wonder many seniors can feel lonely and isolated. Research has shown that eighteen percent of older adults live alone and that forty-three percent report feeling lonely on a regular basis so it’s something that can be a huge problem for those later in life. One way you can combat this is to get on board with technology. While seeing loved ones in person is always going to be best, for times when that’s not possible technology and the internet are incredibly useful. Here are some of the ways you can keep in touch.
Social media sites like Facebook are a great way to have your entire network in one place. You can easily keep in contact with people you have known over the years as well as friends and family. Being able to catch up with what everyone is up to, and knowing that you can easily message or contact people right from the site can certainly help you to feel less alone. Since people use social media to update their lives, it allows you to stay up to date with what people are doing instead of being completely out of the loop.
A regular phone call is great, and you should already have researched the best cell phone plan for seniors. But being able to see each other makes the experience even better. Video calling on apps like Whatsapp or Facetime or through Skype allows you to have a proper conversation with loved ones, even if you can’t be there in person. This is especially useful for those you can’t see in person that often, perhaps you live far away from them or in a different country entirely. It can give you the experience of speaking in person and having a proper conversation from wherever you both are in the world.
Text messaging might seem a little informal, but it’s actually a great way to keep in touch. When you call someone, both of you need to be available to speak at that time. Text messaging can be picked up and continued throughout the day, it’s quick and easy and allows you to stay updated. If for example, the person you’re messaging is busy with children or in work, they can reply as soon as they get the chance. You can send photos, video clips, handwritten notes and all kinds of extras in texts messages these days to really personalise and get the most out of the conversation. If you struggle with the buttons on smartphones, there are adapted mobile phones for seniors that make this a lot easier.
As an older adult, how do you ensure you’re staying in touch with loved ones and keeping close bonds?