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Seniors are talking more about their mental health – and adopting new technologies to do so

Baby boomers and seniors across the country are talking more about their mental health than ever before, adopting the latest software to stay connected with friends and family.

Seniors have been some of the most isolated individuals during the pandemic, with government guidelines encouraging them to shield and remain at home at all costs.

With such a lack of social interaction and inter-connectedness, concerns have been raised about the mental health of seniors, particularly considering their reputation as the 'stiff upper lip' generation.

However, results from a new survey from Canadian senior living company, Amica, suggest that this attitude could be fast becoming a thing of the past.

In over 1,400 American and Canadian seniors aged 55 and above, 85% said that they were now talking more about their mental health than before the pandemic began, using software such as Zoom, Google Meet, Facetime and Skype to contact loved ones.

A large majority of respondents (72%) used video calls for the first time during the pandemic, with almost the exact same percentage (73%) saying that the technology had made their year easier.

Interestingly, retaining good mental health was pinpointed as a key benefit from streaming services too – a technology that 41% of respondents had adopted for the first time during the pandemic. Of six possible options, helping with mental health was chosen by 31% of respondents, behind only 'to pass the time' (41%) and 'to enjoy the nostalgia of old shows/films' (33%).

It should be noted that, despite the encouraging numbers of seniors being more aware of their mental health and adopting technologies to help manage it, 38% of respondents reported feeling less connected than before the pandemic.

Although this is understandable considering the circumstances, a lack of connection and loneliness remains a big problem among seniors.

According to Campaign to End Loneliness, almost 6 in 10 people aged 85 or over in the UK live alone, while an estimated 2 million over-50s will experiencing loneliness by 2025/6.

To read the full survey results, click here.


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