Benefits of Community Involvement for Seniors

Staying active and engaged has many benefits no matter what your age, but it can have especially positive benefits for seniors who may otherwise find themselves isolated or lonely. Community involvement can take on a number of forms from taking part in social groups and clubs to volunteering to spending time with neighbors or other friends. Learn about the benefits of community involvement and some places that are designed to help seniors stay involved.

Positive Mental Health BenefitsWhether you are spending time with a social group like the Red Hat Society or a local seniors group at your community center or spending time with a group at your church or volunteering, you are reaping the benefits of social interaction.

Prevent and Combat Depression: These opportunities give you the opportunity to think outside of yourself and about others. It also allows you to form friendships and create bonds that can help you battle depression. Psychology Today suggests that volunteering in particular has a positive effect on reducing depression since it can give you sense of purpose and a regular schedule.

Slow Down Dementia: Staying active can also slow down dementia. For examples studies have shown that playing board games can help slow down the progression of dementia and finding a group that enjoys the same games such as Scrabble or Rummikub can actually help you keep your mind alert and active.

Positive Effects on Physical HealthCommunity involvement can also have a positive impact on your physical health. This is because it keeps you active which can help you stay healthy. You will want to find activities that you can complete comfortably without putting yourself at risk of injury or picking up an illness. However, going outside on a regular basis and taking in the sunshine and the company of others can help reduce the effects of arthritis. It can also help combat the effects of heart disease and chronic pain because you need to stay active.

Ways to Get Involved in the CommunityThere are a number of ways to become involved in your community. The trick may be to find the opportunities that are the most appealing to you. The easiest place to start may be the church that you are attending or your closest community center. You can also find opportunities through your local senior citizens center or library. Many groups will post information on the bulletin boards in these locations and you can find something that is a good fit for you. If you live in a retirement community, they may also have information on groups you can join or social groups that may be appealing to you.

Volunteer opportunities are just as easy to find, but you should start by considering what areas you are comfortable volunteering. Helping out at a hospital may be a good fit for some people, while other people may prefer to volunteer at the library or school. Other people may prefer something that is more physically active or that gives the opportunity to build long-term relationships. Once you have identified the type of service, you can begin contacting the organizations to learn about the service opportunities available. Be sure that you do not over extend yourself as you volunteer, but choose an activity that you can easily commit to.

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