May 18, 2015 by Dean Bellefeuille

Social Seniors

It’s no surprise that seniors who stay social feel better emotionally, but do the benefits of socialization improve physical health as well? A number of studies point to just that, including the three below that offer compelling reasons to ensure your senior loved ones maintain social ties:

Staying Social Reduces Risk of Disability

A Rush University Medical Center study reported higher levels of social activity are associated with a decreased risk of becoming disabled. Results showed that a person who reported a high level of social activity was about twice as likely to remain free of a disability involving activities of daily living than a person with a low level of social activity, and about 1.5 times as likely to remain free of disability involving instrumental activities of daily living or mobility.

Marked Reduction in Depression and Pain for Those with Greater Social Support

The Journal of Pain published a study that showed social support reduces pain and depression. A similar study showing the connection between social support and physical symptoms was published in the journal Breast Cancer Research and Treatment.

Be Social and Live Longer

Being socially active can contribute to the increase in the quality and length of life.

  • Researchers in Australia followed senior citizens for 10 years. In people 70 years old and older, the risk of dying decreased by 20 percent when people had a strong network of friends. Having social interactions with friends provided a greater effect than interactions with family members.
  • University College London followed 6,500 British people over the age of 52 from 2004 to 2012.Those that lacked social interaction were 26 percent more likely to die during the period than those with active social lives.

At Home Independent Living provides companionship care services that help improve both the physical and emotional health of the individuals we serve. We can confirm that the benefits of socialization make a positive impact in their lives (and ours, too!). Each of our caregivers is carefully matched to a client based on a variety of criteria, ensuring a compatible relationship and fostering a close, long-term friendship. Contact At Home Independent Living today to learn more about our Syracuse elderly care and in-home care services in the surrounding area!

Sources:, Rush University Medical Center, U.S. News and World Report, Breast Cancer Research and Treatment Journal, The American Journal of Psychiatric Health, The Seattle Longitudinal Studies of adult intelligence, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences