The Extraordinary Benefits of Socialization as We Age

Building strong social connections through regular interaction may help prevent dementia. Research by the Mayo Clinic suggests that staying social benefits your mental and physical health. And numerous studies have shown that socialization among older adults not only keeps the brain sharp but can also decrease the risk of developing dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. For such a simple and enjoyable practice, the rewards are, in a word, extraordinary!

If you’re looking for reasons to spend extra time chatting with a friend over coffee, connecting with family, joining a club, volunteering, or taking a course, read on.

Here are the main benefits of having an active social life:

Live longer

People with more social support tend to live longer than those more isolated. This finding holds true even after accounting for the differences in individuals’ overall health levels.

Enjoy better physical health

A stronger immune system comes along with increased social engagement–especially in older adults. This means that social butterflies can better fight off colds, the flu, and even some types of cancer.

Experience better mental health

Research has shown that building social connections is one sure way to improve mood. Because of the way we’re wired, interacting with others increases feelings of well-being and decreases feelings of depression.

Lower your risk of dementia

Recently, good evidence has shown that socializing is super for brain health. Individuals who connect with others perform better on memory and other cognitive tests. In addition, people with active social lives are less likely to develop dementia than their contemporaries who are more socially isolated. As such, finding ways to remain social on a regular basis seems key for individuals that wish to prevent dementia, or at least decrease the risk of memory loss.

A sense of belonging

Feeling like we belong is vital throughout our lives. Everyone wants to know they have people they can share life’s ups and downs with. This is particularly important for the downs. Socializing helps cultivate new friendships and lasting bonds that allow you to share meaningful life events.

Increased self-esteem

Our self-esteem can dwindle as we experience the struggles of aging. We can feel embarrassed or frustrated with ourselves when we can’t do all that we once could. The good news is that the more we socialize, and join in activities with others, the more we feel like we’re still contributing; we still matter. In addition, positive interactions give us confidence that our traits and talents don’t disappear with age.


We all need others to hold us accountable. It’s perhaps more important for older adults because those in their social circles act as accountability partners. Our partners make sure we continue to take care of ourselves. Without them, it’s easy to slip into bad habits of declining self-care. Socializing regularly gives us reasons to keep up with self-care and personal health.

Purposeful Living

When we have people to see, things to do, and somewhere to go, we feel our lives have a purpose. That’s why a healthy social life gives us excitement and anticipation for what lies ahead. The connections we create with others give us meaning and a greater sense of fulfillment. The bottom line is that spending time with those we care about reminds us that life is worthwhile.

Cultivate Your Social Group

Unfortunately, older adults can find that friends and neighbors have moved away, their children don’t live nearby, and their neighborhoods are changing. These changes can cause isolation. And for those with health issues, it’s hard to get out and keeps them homebound, making it challenging to create new social connections.

Finding a place where socialization is almost effortless is a leading reason seniors move to a community setting, especially for those that already suffer from memory loss or wish to stifle or prevent dementia. Moving to an assisted living community is one of the best solutions for isolated seniors. Neighbors are like-minded, engaged, and interested in a wide range of activities. Social opportunities are virtually endless through dining, planned events, organized clubs, and daily life throughout the community. If you want to learn more about what The Cabana at Jensen Dunes has to offer, or visit our community, click or call 772-758-1003 today to schedule a private tour!