Many of us have experienced boredom in our lives, whether friends are away on vacation or we forget to bring a book to the beach. We have gotten through these dull moments and moved on but for some – like senior citizens – it can seem like there is no escape from the monotony of daily life. Why is boredom so detrimental to the health of older individuals?
Startling Consequences of Boredom
When family and friends neglect to visit the nursing home, seniors can feel isolated, experience anxiety or become depressed.
A decades-long study at the University of London revealed that public servants aged 35-55 in the late 1980s were nearly three times as likely to die from heart disease or stroke than those who experienced less day-to-day tedium. After 25 years living with high levels of boredom, these folks were more likely to pass away at a younger age. These results show how important it is to nurture both mental and physical wellbeing throughout our lives.
More Negative Impacts of Boredom
Additional studies show that being alone can lead to feelings of sadness at any age. For seniors in particular, retirement can result in the same mundane routine every day. The death of a spouse or close friend can also lead to boredom. As seniors begin to lose more loved ones, they have less people to spend time or talk with on the phone. These lonely feelings can unfortunately lead to suicide; the rate is highest among men 85 and older.
Tips to Keep Busy and Social
For these many reasons, it is essential for seniors to do what they can to combat boredom. At Avon Health Center, we encourage our residents to continue with their hobbies and try new activities. Participating in our therapeutic recreation programs, such as exercise and art classes, keep seniors physically active and makes it easier to connect with new friends. Rather than letting someone succumb to isolation, our recreation department is happy to accommodate special interests, so there is an activity for every person to enjoy.
When a spouse has passed on or a health problem has made it unsafe for your loved one to live alone, consider admission to Avon Health Center. To learn more, contact us today!
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