Isolation: A Covert Foe

An older woman sits in a chair with a book in her hands and a blanket on her lap. Centre for Ageing Better/Unsplash

An overview of the health impacts of social isolation on older adults. Isolation is linked with a range of health concerns, including higher mortality. As people are becoming more aware of the health risks of social isolation, organizations, community centers, experts and others are creating programs and services to help combat isolation and cultivate community.

“For older adults — one in five of whom is affected by social isolation — the absence of a shoulder to lean on or a hand to hold, of someone to count on in times of stress and need, can be crushing. What’s more, it can have alarming emotional and physical effects… As our awareness of social isolation has grown, so has our understanding of what can be done to ease it.”