When winter hits, it seems like everyone gets the blues. Science has shown that the decreased sunlight during the winter season can reduce serotonin, affecting mood, as well as melatonin, affecting sleep. The resulting depression is commonly called Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD.
This disorder can impact the elderly even more, since they are already at higher risk for social isolation. Here are a few tips for how you and your friends at Senior Home Companions can help an elderly loved one in your life combat SAD and isolation.
Have you ever heard of someone passing away from a broken heart, lonely after the passing of a partner? According to the National Institute on Aging, scientific research supports this and has shown that social isolation and loneliness is linked to expediting many of the conditions that seniors already have, including high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, a weakened immune system, anxiety, depression, cognitive decline, Alzheimer’s disease, and even death.
Senior Home Companions (SHC) can provide a companion caregiver to your family that will help your loved one feel less lonely. Many of our senior clients come to view our caregivers as a trusted member of the family, which helps prevent social isolation and the health risks that come with.
Our companion caregivers can help make sure that your loved one is getting out of the house for regular outings, like running errands or salon appointments. Especially if they cannot drive anymore, this service is invaluable to preventing them being cooped up in the house all day long and allows them to get both social interaction and sun exposure during precious daylight hours.
SHC caregivers can also accompany seniors to desired events or activities, where they can visit with old friends or meet new ones, allowing them additional prevention from isolation. Some activities that caregivers may engage your loved one in include light exercise, hobbies they enjoy and visits to church or community events.
Those with symptoms of SAD or depression can find even daily life to be very difficult. Couple that with mobility or fine motor issues found in the elderly, and daily tasks can seem nearly impossible. Our companions at SHC can assist your loved one with household responsibilities, personal care and more.
If you would like to employ Senior Home Companions to help a family member prevent isolation, please contact us online or at (317) 251-0441. We are prepared to assist throughout all seasons of life. If you are strongly concerned about SAD or depression in a loved one, be sure to contact a medical professional.