People begin to form social connections from the toddler years throughout adulthood. Researchers have always known the importance of a healthy social life, but up until recently, the focus was on the emotional benefits. Now, we know that people with vibrant social lives also tend to live healthier and longer. Mental health and stress are connected!
For example, Alzheimer’s researchers have performed studies that show a connection between a healthy social life and a reduction in cognitive decline (loss of memory and related functions). Participants in the study who socialize regularly experienced 70% less decline in memory and function.
My daughter is seven years old, full of wonder and spunk and big blue eyes that will melt your heart. From the moment she was born, my husband has been wrapped around her pinky finger and stressed to the gills about how in the world he is going to survive her dating years.
Last night, as she was getting ready to drift off to sleep, she said she had to tell me something and wanted to whisper into my ear. Today, I passed Noah in PE and you know what he did? He blew me a kiss. I don’t know why he did that.
She and I giggled, and my husband looked like he had been punched in the gut. A sign of things to come!
Socializing can be any kind of “in person” activity, but humans are an efficient species. Here are a few ways you can enhance your physical and social well-being:
Ask yourself— “How do I handle stress?” Do you think you handle it well, or could you use some help?
Whether you are 7 or 70 years old, surrounding yourself with friends and loved ones is one of the healthiest things you can do! And give them hugs every so often. You’ll boost your health even more!
Sources: Berkley; NIH
Last reviewed: 5/15/2019
SIGN IN to share your comments or REGISTER today to become a Connect member.
A Division of Health Care Service Corporation, a Mutual Legal Reserve Company, an Independent Licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. © Copyright 2019 Health Care Service Corporation. All Rights Reserved.
Telligent is an operating division of Verint Americas, Inc., an independent company that provides and hosts an online community platform for blogging and access to social media for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of New Mexico.
File is in portable document format (PDF). To view this file, you may need to install a PDF reader program. Most PDF readers are a free download. One option is Adobe® Reader® which has a built-in screen reader. Other Adobe accessibility tools and information can be downloaded at http://access.adobe.com.