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Social Support and Health Benefits: Tips and Research (2)

Page history last edited by Lexy Harkins 7 years, 6 months ago


About Us





Emotional Support Keeps Loneliness Away:



It is possible to be alone, and not feel lonely. It is possible to be in a crowded room and still feel alone. The key is emotional support.  Some older adults have a support network, but still feel lonely because they lack emotional support.


Older adults who feel understood by those closest to them feel the least lonely (5).  You can find emotional support by connecting with people of the same age or who have had similar life experiences as you.



Support Others


Giving social support to others also has health benefits. Older adults who participate in productive social activities report higher levels of happiness and life satisfaction (1).  Productive activities are things you can do to help others.


Productive activities include volunteering, caring for another person, or helping a neighbor. Volunteering helps older adults feel better and can ease anxiety and depression (6).  Maintaining close family relationships is another way you can support others and increase your own social support (4). 



Tips for connecting socially:

  •  Volunteer 
  •  Call a friend 
  •  Host a family dinner 
  •  Join a dance or exercise class 
  •  Bake together 
  •  Go for a walk with a friend 
  •  Start a book club  

Tips for supporting others: 

  • Call an older adult in your life, and ask them to share their story              
  • Ask a loved one how you can provide better emotional support
  • Help a friend work on a home project
  • Invite a friend to join your exercise group or book club
  • Ask a family member to go out to lunch
  • Find transportation for an older adult who wants to get out to see friends
  • Tell others about how social support is good for health    



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