The topics of solo living and aging alone are gaining momentum in the news and even in society's awareness. Just a few years ago, 2017 and 2018, a few colleagues and I worked very hard to get the word out about the solos' unique needs. And now, our segment has gained widespread attention! We're getting noticed.
It seems most research on the topic of aging alone highlights loneliness. If that hits a cord, this study discovered:
- Talking to friends even for short periods can help your mental health.
- Discussing mental health has increasingly become normalized—which can help people prioritize their well-being.
- How important human connection can be and how simple steps can help people preserve their mental health.
The study found that conversations don’t have to be long or in-depth, instead, look for moments when you have time to reach out, even if it's only for a few minutes. I think we put too much pressure on ourselves to make strong connections and to build a support group. But what's more important, like this study shows, just look for those small moments of engagement. Call a friend to touch base. It's not necessary to spend an hour with her on the phone—use the call as an intentional check-in.
If you're saying, “I do not need connection every day," just make sure that 's not something you have come to accept.
Here's a fun article to read, Poetry, Aging and Loneliness, by Loren Kantor, a poetry instructor. She says, "I love working with people who’ve come to the final chapter of their lives and no longer need to prove anything."
Poetry, Aging and Loneliness
FOOD FOR THOUGHT
In a Wakely Consulting Group study, Medicare Advantage Costs Less than Original Medicare, saves Americans billions of dollars every year. Other findings, MA enrollees were more satisfied with their care and MA plans outperformed original Medicare on all sixteen clinical quality measures.
Furthermore, my friend and colleague, Monica Stynchula, MSW, MPH, HIT Pro, after a thorough read of the study adds, "Let’s get real here, many of the same providers and facilities sign contracts with Medicare and MA companies. I question that MA insureds are getting different care than original Medicare patients. In my humble opinion, that difference here is MA plans focus on the whole person and community to the social determinants of health and overcoming the health inequities in our system. MA plans are innovators. They use data and technology to proactively identify and aggressively address the social needs to reduce the need for more costly and intensive skilled care. MA plans are paying utility bills, providing transportation, and home delivered healthy meals, addressing home safety needs, and using staff to coordinate care."
I have an MA plan and find it's benefits fits my needs very well.
If you're living alone and want a simple tool that gives peace of mind, try SnugSafe. I've been using it for four years and found it easy to install and set up. I'm affiliate for Snug so if you subscribe, use the code SOLO10 and get a 10% discount on the monthly fees. I use the free version and find it's all I need right now. Check out SnugSafe here.
Testimonials of Snug users:
"I’m a retired RN who is living alone at the age of 85. Altho I am very active, I still worried about something happening to me. My children also. The children and I are more relaxed knowing someone will be contacted if I don't check in." Great G’ma Gene
"The comfort of knowing that someone would know to worry about me before it was too gruesomely late means I can finally fall asleep at night. I'm so incredibly grateful for this app and its developers. I'm a healthy 38 year old, but I live alone, work from home and for myself, and have a tendency to go days without responding to calls & texts. I'm so flighty in communication that no one would be alarmed if they didn't hear from me for days... which is where my insomniac panic attacks kicked in."
In the near future, I plan to kick off monthly Q&A chats and will keep you posted as I plan these out.
I hope you enjoy the newsletter. Stay tuned for more!
Take care and remember to reach out and connect with a friend today!
Have a concern about growing older alone? Let's chat and see if I can help.
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