Family, Friends, and Community
Dr. Jerree Forbes, Ed.D.
Dr. Forbes is a cognitive practitioner at Performance Health, PA in Wichita, Kansas
The best times in life are almost always when we are with other people. Births, weddings, birthday parties, celebrations, playing games, working, attending and learning in school, church and worship are all keenly social activities. The network of people we interact with in our lives includes friends, family neighbors, and our community at large.
We were designed to be with, interact with, and live with other people. We develop a strong sense of who we are in part by seeing the differences in those around us. We learn and develop attributes from these interactions and we share who we are with other people so they can develop as well. There is a strong drive in us to share and connect with others. Making connections with others and socializing is so important that it can improve our health, increase our ability to think and perhaps extend our life.
A study of 2,249 California women published in the July 2008 American Journal of Public Health, indicated older women who maintained large social networks reduced their risk of dementia and delayed or prevented cognitive impairment. In a 2008 AARP Bulletin, Valerie Crooks, Clinical trials administrative director at Southern California Kaiser Permanente Medical Group and lead author of the study stated, “If you stay connected, you have a better shot,” adding, “Whenever we have even the most basic exchange, we have to think about how to respond, and that stimulates the brain. There are people who are outliers, who have two very close relationships and are fine cognitively. But people who have three or more relationships tend to do better.”
In March of 2013, HealthDay News reported that, “Elderly people who are socially isolated and lonely may be at greater risk of early death” according to British research. The British research was led by Andrew Steptoe, director of the Institute of Epidemiology and Health Care at University College London who stated in HealthDay’s report that “Social contact is a fundamental aspect of human existence. The scientific evidence is that being socially isolated is probably bad for your health, and may lead to the development of serious illness and a reduced life span.”
Spending meaningful time with others and socializing is a great way to make friends. A community of friends can help you to think better, live better and maybe live a bit longer.
At Legend Senior Living we understand social contact is a fundamental aspect of human existence and that being isolated socially isolated is bad for your health. From exceptional restaurant-style dining to a full calendar of life enriching activities – living at a Legend Senior Living residence keeps you active and engaged in life.