Presentation Type

Poster

Faculty Mentor’s Full Name

Catherine Ipsen

Faculty Mentor’s Department

Rural Institute

Abstract

Previous research has shown social isolation and loneliness contribute to decreased quality of life, as well as compromised psychological and physical health among older adults. This represents a public health crisis in the context of a growing aging population anticipated to cost the United States over 126 billion dollars. The purpose of this research review is to build the case for conducting an effectiveness study aimed to reduce feelings of loneliness and social isolation in the aging population. To achieve this aim, I review the various characteristics of the aging population, the social and financial ramifications associated with social isolation and loneliness, and various risk factors associated with social isolation and loneliness in the aging population. Furthermore, I analyzed the effectiveness of existing preventative programs that focus on mitigating feelings of loneliness and social isolation amongst the aging community. Finally, this paper includes results and input from a community stakeholder group who provided contextual background for identifying effective referral and delivery strategies. In addition, this group helped shape the intervention content based on personal experiences working with the target group. Together, this literature review and community stakeholder meeting will be used to develop a grant proposal aimed at the development and testing of a community-based intervention to effectively manage and reduce feelings of loneliness among the aging population. This research is significant as it will allow for further insight into effective ways of managing loneliness and social isolation in order to mitigate distress among the aging population.

Category

Health and Medical Science

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Apr 17th, 11:00 AM Apr 17th, 12:00 PM

Loneliness and the Aging Population

UC South Ballroom

Previous research has shown social isolation and loneliness contribute to decreased quality of life, as well as compromised psychological and physical health among older adults. This represents a public health crisis in the context of a growing aging population anticipated to cost the United States over 126 billion dollars. The purpose of this research review is to build the case for conducting an effectiveness study aimed to reduce feelings of loneliness and social isolation in the aging population. To achieve this aim, I review the various characteristics of the aging population, the social and financial ramifications associated with social isolation and loneliness, and various risk factors associated with social isolation and loneliness in the aging population. Furthermore, I analyzed the effectiveness of existing preventative programs that focus on mitigating feelings of loneliness and social isolation amongst the aging community. Finally, this paper includes results and input from a community stakeholder group who provided contextual background for identifying effective referral and delivery strategies. In addition, this group helped shape the intervention content based on personal experiences working with the target group. Together, this literature review and community stakeholder meeting will be used to develop a grant proposal aimed at the development and testing of a community-based intervention to effectively manage and reduce feelings of loneliness among the aging population. This research is significant as it will allow for further insight into effective ways of managing loneliness and social isolation in order to mitigate distress among the aging population.