Benefits of Pen Pals for the Elderly

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Whether your senior loved one writes letters to a student in his or her community or emails another older adult who lives overseas, having a pen pal provides a wonderful opportunity to expand his or her social circle. The Caledon in-home care experts at Home Care Assistance explain how this type of social connection can positively impact your loved one’s mental and emotional wellbeing.

Ward Off Loneliness

Seniors who live alone run the risk of experiencing the effects of social isolation. Although nothing can replace frequent visits from friends, family, and Caledon caregivers, receiving and writing letters and emails can help fill in the gaps. When your loved one has a pen pal, he or she can look forward to the exciting surprise of hearing from someone at any time of the day.

Provide a Different Perspective

Today’s seniors thrive on learning more about the world around them, and no one wants to become too set in their ways. For this reason, many older adults prefer a pen pal who comes from a different background. Through emails and letters, your loved one can trade stories and information with someone who can offer a wider view of the world and take his or her mind off personal problems.

Strengthen Communication Skills

Reading and writing are critical for helping seniors retain their cognitive abilities. As your loved one writes letters, he or she can strengthen memory skills while recalling a story or searching for the perfect word to use. Seniors who have difficulty with oral language may also find the process of writing to a pen pal much more comfortable because it makes communication easier.

Build Self-Confidence

Making new friends can be intimidating at any age, and seniors sometimes have a lack of confidence after retirement. However, opening up to a pen pal can provide your loved one with a renewed sense of purpose. When your loved one knows someone is looking forward to receiving his or her letters and will send a positive response, he or she can wake up excited to see what each new correspondence will bring.

Social interaction is important for seniors, whether it comes from a letter in the mail or a visit from a professional caregiver. At Home Care Assistance, our caregivers become trusted companions, providing the social and mental stimulation and emotional support many seniors need. We also offer specialized Parkinson’s, dementia, and Alzheimer’s care Caledon seniors and their families can rely on. For more information on our elderly care services, call one of our friendly Care Managers at 905-951-8885 today.