Virtual Emotional Support Counseling for Seniors During Covid
Seniors are one of the most vulnerable groups impacted by COVID-19. Beyond the physical threat, there are serious emotional and mental consequences to quarantine and the pandemic that can negatively impact their health. Seniors who live in nursing homes or are unable to socialize or even leave their house to go about their normal routine.
We believe that there is no age when mental health doesn’t matter. Our virtual counseling services for seniors can provide much-needed support and company during a difficult time.
Risks to Senior Mental Health
The elderly population often experiences mental health problems due to changes in their physical health and environment. Many senior citizens who lived active lives have been confined to their nursing home facilities or homes without anyone to talk to; they are not able to receive as much exercise, mental stimulation or companionship as they were pre-COVID, which can lead to the development of depression and crippling loneliness.
Even those who have family nearby may not be able to see them face-to-face due to social distancing measures. While quarantine is in their best interest, it also places a barrier between them, their loved ones and the outside world.
Health anxiety is also a pressing concern; as many seniors 65 and older also have health conditions, they may be especially high-risk. Simple acts like taking the dog out or going to the supermarket can endanger them, which only leads to greater fear and chronic stress.
These compounded feelings can take a toll on their physical well-being, too. Poor mental health can weaken the immune system, which makes them even more susceptible to illness.
How Counseling Can Help
Virtual counseling provides mental health support at a safe distance. Seniors can connect with a licensed therapist who listens to their concerns and gives them space to process what they are going through. There is not always an answer to resolve someone’s difficult feelings; rather than striving to offer platitudes and false affirmations, we seek to provide reassurance through affirming one’s strength and resilience.
Seniors also have unique worries and needs that deserve to be treated with care and compassion. Our virtual counseling services encompass the unique challenges, anxieties and experiences of the senior population to ensure our services truly resonate with them.
Sometimes, all a senior citizen really needs is just someone to listen and talk to. We want to be there for them while also providing helpful tips they can implement to help themselves.
How You Can Help Your Loved One
Communicate as often as possible, especially if you are not able to physically see your loved one. You can offer to buy their groceries and leave them on their doorstep along with some disinfectant; drive-by greetings, social distance conversations with a mask and daily phone calls can help ease some of the loneliness seniors are facing during this time.
If you live with your senior relative or loved one, emotional support in the form of time spent together is the most valuable. Watch a television program they like, especially if it’s one from their youth that they enjoyed. Listen to their favorite music, do senior exercise videos together and share meals.
Most importantly, check in with how they’re feeling. Many seniors feel cast aside and ignored in today’s fast-paced, digital society. Counseling is just one way you can increase the emotional support in your loved one’s life, but the most valuable thing you can give them is your time and attention.
If you would like to learn more about us and our virtual emotional support counseling, please contact us today.