During the coronavirus challenge, it is important for high-risk populations – the elderly, especially those with underlying health problems – to practice "social distancing" – but a diminished social life need not be lonely. Using the Internet can connect us to the people we care about and connect us to another world – both of which make us feel less isolated and lonely.
Current statistics show that seniors are quickly entering the arena of social networks. Sign up for a network, connect with friends (you may even discover old friends) and enjoy the results.
- Facebook – if you are not one of the more than one billion people who already use it ̵
- With Skype, you can enjoy live video visits face-to-face over the Internet with a webcam or computer or tablet — in camera and microphone. You can download the latest version of Skype and connect for free after setting up a profile and making or accepting contact requests with friends. (Click here for instructions on getting started with Skype.)
- Zoom is a popular method of personal video chatting with one or more friends, and the website is especially supportive at this time.
Listening to Music
Experts say that listening to your favorite music can be extremely uplifting, especially when you are listening to familiar songs.
Find out more
The start of school is now just a click away. Even if you study online, you are part of a community and through coursework you can reach students of all ages who share your interests. Click here for a list of free online courses recommended by Senior Planet. And check out …
- Coursera, an online resource that works with leading universities and organizations that offer free online courses. The technology enables these educational partners to provide millions of students with access to quality education.
Get a Pet or Just Look At One
Studies show that owning a pet improves both physical and emotional health and is a sure way to defeat loneliness.
- The North Shore Animal League is the world's largest no-kill rescue and adoption organization. It enables people to see animals for adoption and the times / places for mobile adoption cars as well as other ways to express your love for animals. (Click here for more online resources for choosing and grooming pets.)
Can't have a pet? Check out live webcams of cats, dogs and wildlife.
UCLA researchers have found that seniors who practice meditation can reduce feelings of loneliness and also strengthen their immune systems.
- Sahaja Yoga Meditation offers a free online course for the purest form of meditation through videos and audio-guided meditations.
Do you have an online loneliness buster that you like to use? Share the information in the comment box below.