Many people experience loneliness and depression in old age, either as a result of living alone or due to lack of close family ties and reduced connections with their culture of origin, which results in an inability to actively participate in the community activities.
The loneliness and social isolation that seniors experience is usually caused by low-quality social relationships, or a lack of these relationships entirely. However, there are many other things that could cause these issues, such as being age 80 or older, having chronic health problems, and changing family structures.
Generally speaking, though, loneliness is usually associated with older adults and the elderly more often than younger people just getting started in life. Surprisingly, a new study from the University of California, San Diego concludes the opposite; Americans are most lonely in their 20s and least lonely in their 60s.
Causes of loneliness in seniors
Researchers from the Netherlands say a higher proportion of us report loneliness when we get older, and the things that make us feel lonely differ among age groups. They surveyed more than 26,000 people between the ages of 19 and 65.
One of the most effective methods seems to be cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), which can help a lonely individual better understand how his or her assumptions and behavior might be working against the desire to connect with others.
Tips for Overcoming Loneliness in Seniors
While many older adults can get by on their own, the reality is that many need extra attention and care. According to reports, roughly 29 percent of elderly adults lived alone as of 2010 – despite the fact that 12 percent of seniors needed assistance completing activities of daily living (ADLs).
What are the main signs and symptoms of chronic loneliness?
Surveys suggest that loneliness levels can peak in young adulthood (around 30 years of age) while slowly diminishing throughout middle and early old age (65 to 80 years). It isn’t until people reach the age of 80 or over that reported levels of perceived loneliness pass levels seen in young adulthood.
WEDNESDAY, Nov. 11, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Loneliness can strike at any age, but a new study finds that young adults are the loneliest Americans, with people in their 60s being the least lonely. Researchers analyzed responses from more than 2,800 people nationwide (ages 20-69) who participated in an online survey.
Loneliness can leave people feeling isolated and disconnected from others. It is a complex state of mind that can be caused by life changes, mental health conditions, poor self-esteem, and personality traits. Loneliness can also have serious health consequences including decreased mental wellness and physical problems.
People who are socially isolated are likely to have altered brain function, exhibit poor decision-making and decreased memory and learning. The elderly are particularly susceptible to loneliness and social isolation for a number of reasons; the loss of a partner, the loss of siblings and lifelong friends.