September is recognized as Healthy Aging Month to gain awareness of the positive aspects of aging and remind us a healthy lifestyle can be adopted and continued at any age. The month is celebrated by including healthy habits such as exercising, healthy eating, and getting enough sleep into a daily routine. It comes to no surprise that social connections are also a key part of healthy aging. In fact, people with strong social relationships are fifty percent more likely to live longer and studies have shown that social isolation and loneliness for older adults are associated with an increased likelihood of dementia, heart disease and more.
Looking for ways to connect? Hello4Health™ has some ideas for you to check out and incorporate into your daily life:
- Staying engaged as an older adult means maintaining and building new connections with people and groups in your community. Try out these lifelong activities to build lasting connections.
- Meet new people by making volunteer connections! This is a great way to make a positive impact in your community while bringing you benefits as well.
- Connecting through exercise is a great way to increase your activity while making social connections to improve your overall health.
To learn more about Healthy Aging Month, check out this website.
Social connections between older and younger people can improve well-being for both groups. According to a report from Generations United, ninety-two percent of Americans believe intergenerational activities can help reduce loneliness across all ages and nearly eight out of ten adults want to spend more time with people outside their age group.
With September being Healthy Aging Month it’s a great time to focus on the powerful impact of intergenerational connections. Here are some ideas on how to connect:
- Send cards to your loved ones
- Volunteer together
- Talk on the phone or facetime once a week if there is distance between you
- Go through picture albums and discuss family stories together
- Make a family recipe together
Mental well-being resources for all ages
Did you know Allina Health has mental well-being resources for people of all ages? You’re probably most familiar with Hello4Health, which focuses on social connections for adults, but Allina has two other mental well-being programs we encourage you to check out!
Health Powered Kids focuses on youth, ages 3-14, with lesson plans to help kids Be Active, Keep Clean, Find Balance and Eat Well. Examples of their well-being resources include:
- What We Can Do to Stress Less
- Learning Mindfulness Through Movement
- Self-Esteem and Body Image Activities for Kids
Change to Chill focuses on youth, ages 13-19, with resources to help teens become more aware of what stress is, what causes it and how to manage it. Examples of their well-being resources include: