The coronavirus pandemic has been difficult for everyone. Yet, one group of citizens that seems to be impacted by this vicious virus and the lifestyle changes the most are seniors. Due to the body’s natural aging process, people over the age of 60 are said to have weaker immune systems meaning they are at higher risk of contracting and even passing away from the coronavirus. For these reasons, senior citizens are strongly advised to remain at home where it is safest for them until a solution is developed.
While remaining at home is the safest option for seniors right now, being away from your friends and family for long periods of time can lead to feelings of sadness and loneliness. You feel cut off from the rest of the world as you try and cope with the fears and anxieties you’re experiencing in the wake of the pandemic. If not addressed, these overwhelming feelings can lead to depression.
If you or someone you know is having a hard time dealing with social isolation during the pandemic, here are some suggestions on how to cope.
Make a Phone Call
Though you can’t see those closest to you in person, there’s still the traditional form of communication. Pick up the phone and reach out to friends and family. It can make you feel good to simply hear their voice, know that they’re okay, and talk about things that either worry or interest you.
Emails are another form of communication that can be great to use during the pandemic. As writing has always been thought of as therapeutic, emails provide you with a platform to speak out about your emotions and get support from those you love. It not only makes you feel good but can brighten up the day of recipients. You could send funny Father’s Day cards to your adult son, forward jokes to a friend, share recipes with your daughter, or send a funny video with your grandkids.
Play Games With Friends
Sure, you could play solitaire, complete a crossword puzzle, or do sudoku on your own, but there’s nothing like being able to play games with friends. If you start to feel isolated or lonely during the pandemic, why not invite some of your best friends to play your favorite games online? You can find gaming websites or download apps on your phone or computer and play everything from Bingo and chess to spades and poker with your friends.
Attend a Watch Party
Since the coronavirus pandemic started, watch parties have become an increasingly popular way to stay connected to friends and family. You can invite some of your closest friends and family to watch your favorite television show, movie, or live concert. Make some snacks, grab your favorite beverage, and curl up on the couch for a good time and entertainment.
Schedule Video Chats
Better than simply hearing the voice of your friends and family is being able to see them. It may not yet be safe enough for you to pay them a visit but video chatting is a close second. Whether you use your smartphone, laptop, or tablet, you can download free online communication tools with video features that allow you to not only talk to but see the people you reach out to. You can talk to your children, check in on the grandkids, and perhaps schedule a virtual lunch with your best friends.
Join a Support Group
If you’re really struggling with social isolation during the pandemic support from others experiencing the same thing can be a big help. Join an online support group and talk with other members about your experiences, learn about their experiences, and build connections that can last long beyond the pandemic.
No one could have ever imagined that something as serious as a pandemic would strike the country and the rest of the world the way it has. During this time it is especially important for seniors to take care of both their physical and emotional health. If you’re having an especially difficult time dealing with loneliness and isolation during the pandemic, consider the above-mentioned solutions to improve your mood and stay connected to those you care about.