Isolation is something that you might not notice right away with your aging adult. Gradually, she may have stopped going out as much or spending as much time with other people. Learning why she’s doing this can help you to come up with a solution for her.
She’s Experienced Losses.
Loss is terrible, no matter how old someone is. If your aging adult has lost people that she loves or her ability to do certain things, this can lead to depression and a general lack of enthusiasm for her life in general. Withdrawing from life is not unusual at all for people who have experienced a tremendous loss.
Her Health Is Worsening.
As your elderly family member’s health becomes worse, she may not feel like getting out and about as much. She might also worry that something could happen to her if she’s out in public or going through her normal routine. Your elderly family member might also worry about you and other people finding out that her health is getting worse than it has been.
Embarrassment can create tons of problems for your elderly family member. She may be embarrassed about how she walks, how she talks, or assistive devices that she needs to use. It’s important to remind your elderly family member that she doesn’t need to feel embarrassed about anything that is happening. Help her to do what she can to get past those feelings.
She Doesn’t Want to Bother Anyone.
Feeling like a burden is extremely common for aging adults. As your elderly family member’s needs become bigger, she might become concerned that everyone in her life will start to drift away. If she is the one to withdraw first, then that’s something that she’s in control of instead of something that’s happening to her.
Her Mobility Is Hampered.
Depending on the mobility issues that your senior might be having, she might not be comfortable using assistive devices in public. She might also worry that friends and family members will be unhappy about waiting for her or accommodating her needs as she gets where she needs to go. Reassurances can go a long way toward helping her get past this, but examples work much better.
Helping your elderly family member to deal with social isolation is vital in order to help her mental health. Use all of the tools at your disposal from asking neighbors to check in on your elderly family member to hiring home care providers for companionship to combat the problems your senior is having.