If you did not have an active social life in the early parts of your life, chances are that you will become even more socially withdrawn as you get older, and probably more inclined than ever to stay home alone.
But, did you know an active social life can help you to prevent some aging diseases?
Socializing ranks right up there with diet and exercise on the “aging” ladder of importance. Sometimes, when an individual retires or a spouse dies, friends withdraw simply because the person doesn’t fit in anymore with their lifestyles.
Rather than keeping busy and finding other friends or methods of socializing, seniors often develop depression which can lead to other diseases such as alcoholism, heart disease and even cancer.
It’s been proven that individuals who enjoy an active social life can extend their lives by years. There are an abundance of benefits for socializing other than life extension-stress reduction, a feeling of importance and high self esteem are just a few of the benefits. Keeping active also reduces the risk of mental diseases such as dementia and Alzheimer’s.
Sometimes seniors must make the effort to become involved rather than waiting for someone to come to them. Getting involved in the community or other organizations can mean the difference in isolation and depression or enjoying a healthy mix of friendships and outside activities.
Being around people who have the same interests help those age 55+ enjoy life even more. Laughing and creating new memories are the best medicines to keep from thinking and focusing on the negatives in life. Joining an activity that’s new or something challenging is especially helpful.
Most of us rely on human contact for our very survival, unlike other species in the animal kingdom. From the time we’re born and depend on our mother and father to feed and take care of us until the later years, when we still need others.
It’s not surprising that as we age, socializing with others becomes more important than ever. We need contact with others who either share our interests and opinions or have interests and opinions that are entirely new to us.
Remember that when you socialize with others in your age group, you are also helping others as much as you are helping yourself, so feel free to become a regular ‘social butterfly’ to assist in staying healthy, connected and happy in the “55 and better” years!