Is Living Alone Unhealthy in the Golden Years?

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Many people cherish their solitude, and seniors often enjoy having the ability to do what they want on their own schedules. The benefits of solo living include being more motivated to stay independent, but there are also a few downsides. Living alone isn’t necessarily unhealthy for seniors if they take steps to limit the drawbacks of being by themselves the majority of the time. 


Create a Plan for Handling Emergencies

One of the scariest parts about having an aging loved one who lives alone is the realization that it could be a long time before someone realizes he or she is hurt or extremely ill. Seniors should have ways to reach out for emergency help, such as using a wearable medical alert system. You should make sure your senior loved one knows who to call when he or she is sick but the symptoms aren’t serious enough to warrant calling emergency services.

Many older adults are choosing to age in place, and some need a helping hand to continue living at home safely and comfortably. Luckily, there is professional homecare seniors can trust and rely on.


Implement a Home Security Plan

Seniors who live alone are vulnerable to potential criminal activity, since other people may notice their solo living arrangements and know there’s no one there to help. Try to maintain a visible stream of visitors going to your loved one’s house that makes it clear there are people who care. Then consider setting up home automation at your loved one’s home that keeps the doors locked and monitored. 


Make More of an Effort to Socialize

Living alone means there’s no one to talk to when times get challenging. Your loved one needs to speak to at least one other person each day, and it’s best if his or her calendar is filled with several different opportunities to socialize. For instance, your loved one could have lunch dates with a friend a few times a week or attend senior classes or events in the community. Develop a plan for transportation and regular trips outside the house to keep your loved one from becoming isolated. 

For families living in Reston, respite care can be a wonderful solution when their aging loved ones need companionship and socialization a few hours a week or just need minor assistance with daily household tasks. At Assisting Hands Home Care, we thrive on helping seniors maintain their independence while living in the comfort of home.


Seek Help with Potentially Dangerous Tasks

The decision to live alone is admirable, but your loved one also needs to know when to lean on people for help. Asking for assistance with hazardous activities keeps your loved one safe so he or she can continue to age in place. Your loved one needs to know it’s okay to call for help with things such as changing light bulbs or mowing the lawn. Injury prevention is more important than worrying about feeling like a bother, and most people want to help. 


Request Regular Check-Ins

A senior who lives alone should check in with someone on a regular basis. Having a routine that includes daily phone calls with friends or family members can be a great way for seniors to let their loved ones know they’re doing well. Your loved one may also simply enjoy the reassurance that comes from knowing someone cares enough to check in. A professional home caregiver can be a tremendous asset if your loved one prefers to live alone. The type of home care Reston seniors need can vary. Some need assistance a few hours a day, while others require more extensive around-the-clock assistance. At Assisting Hands Home Care, we tailor our care plans based on each senior’s individual care needs, and the plans can be adjusted at any time. We are a trusted provider of respite and 24-hour care, and we also offer specialized Alzheimer’s, dementia, Parkinson’s, and stroke care for seniors. Call us today to create a customized in-home care plan.