A song writer once wrote these famous words, “People, people who need people, are the luckiest people in the world.” This is more than just a nice idea. There is actual scientific proof to support this idea. Basically, human beings are hard-wired to need interaction with each other. In a report by the New York Times, the need for social interaction is linked to good physical and mental health as well as longevity. A study by Harvard Women’s Health Watch found that out of the dozens of people in the study, those with strong social connections were happier and had fewer health problems. Another study of 7,000 men and women showed that people who were disconnected from others were three times more likely to die during the nine-year study than those who had strong social ties. Study after study shows proof of the fact that we need to be connected with other people or our own well-being.
So, why is this? Here are some benefits:
- Interaction helps relieve loneliness and depression
- Strong connections help form a good support system
- Conversations with others lead to being a sounding board for sharing ideas and advice
- Keeps your brain active and reduces the risk of dementia
- Builds mutual trust and friendship
- Gives you a sense of safety and belonging
The type of interaction that is being referred to is actual face to face interaction. In our world of technology and electronics, sometimes this type of interaction is a challenge as talking online or over the phone replaces face to face communication for some people. Some interaction with the use of electronics is ok, but it should never take the place of good, old-fashioned conversation. So, what can we do to make sure we stay socially active?
Here are some suggestions:
- Make sure and get out
of your room each day
- Eat meals in the
- Take advantage of all the activities that your facility has to offer
- Encourage family and friends to come for a visit
- Strike up a conversation with a friend
In conclusion, social interaction is needed for our health and overall well-being. Now that you have the facts and some suggestions on how make sure you stay socially active, you can take the steps you need to keep yourself socially active for a happier, heathier life!