Len Kaye, professor of social work and director of the University of Maine Center on Aging, is available to offer tips and advice to help keep elders, shut-ins and others safe, connected and engaged during the holidays.
The holidays can bring back memories of healthier, more active, more socially enriched times in the lives of older adults and can underscore some of the harsher realities of aging including, physical decline, loss of loved ones including family and friends increased economic difficulty and above all a sense of separation or isolation from the hustle and bustle of daily life, Kaye says.
In the case of families that have experienced death or divorce, family gatherings dont necessarily mitigate loneliness. Holidays can exacerbate loneliness, he says.
Being surrounded by family or friends can even make a depressed person, young or old, feel like just a face in a crowd. In the case of a divided family, childrens loyalty to their parents can become an issue when they must decide in which home to spend a holiday.
Provided by University of Maine
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