Isolation could be cause of death in older adults: Study

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Has it been a while since you last saw your parents or called them on the phone?

As a person grows up, they often have to prioritize certain people over others, and that’s perfectly natural. But sometimes calling your parents can bring both of you a lot of benefits both emotionally and physically—and one study has indicated that it might even give your parents a longer and more fulfilling life.

The University of California San Francisco (UCSF) has released the results of a new study focusing on the relationship between loneliness in older adults and their functional decline. The study involved following and evaluating 1,604 older adults with an average age of 71 years over a course of six years. The subjects in the study came from varying backgrounds, races and genders, and were evaluated every two years on a number of criteria.

The results found that loneliness is a common source of stress and suffering in the lives of older people. Loneliness can bring medical issues such as depression, cognitive decline and also cardiovascular diseases.

According to the results, 23 percent of adults who felt lonely died within the six years the study was conducted, and only 14 percent of the adults who didn’t feel lonely passed away. The research also noted that about 43 percent of adults over 60 years old feel isolated and lonely.

So it is recommended to reconnect with your parents. Try finding time to visit them or ask how they’re doing, even though life can be unbearably busy. Your companionship is actually very important to them.