Call for an instant quote
0345 90 80 161
Open Mon to Fri 09:00 - 17:30 | Sat 09:00 - 16:00 (GMT)
23 December 2015 16:37
A senior woman is helped to use the internet
Councils should offer more activities for older people to stave off loneliness, such as singing and internet training, a health watchdog says.
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) has published new guidance aimed at increasing independence and mental wellbeing.
It says older people should be encouraged to join community choirs, read to young children in schools and take part in group walks. Local authorities should also promote arts and crafts and other creative activities, Nice believes.
Another way to boost well-being is by taking a holiday. Pensioners up to the age of 100 can travel abroad with seniors travel insurance.
There is a need to offer "intergenerational activities", according to Nice, which uses the examples of older people helping with reading in schools or young people providing older people with support to use new technologies.
The watchdog wants pensioners to be given technical support so they can get to grips with mobile phones and internet-enabled TVs and computers.
The importance of maintaining friendships to prevent loneliness is also highlighted, with calls for schemes such as befriending programmes in places of worship or home visits between people of similar ages.
The mental health benefits of volunteering should also be made much clearer to older people, Nice says.
The watchdog also says that health workers in contact with older people should be made aware that certain life events or circumstances are more likely to increase the risk of physical and mental decline.
Older people whose partners have died in the past two years are particularly at risk, it explains.
Professor Gillian Leng, director of health and social care at Nice, says ageing affects everyone differently and there are many factors that contribute to a person's ability to remain independent, avoid loneliness and maintain their mental wellbeing.
The new guidelines offer advice on putting this into practice. Professor Leng adds that this includes looking at what is already in local areas and how it can be improved. Are there any transport difficulties, for example, and do older people know there are activities and services available?
21 October 2016
A union is warning of travel chaos over the Christmas period at four major UK airports, unless a baggage carrier transfers staff to other companies.
20 October 2016
Thousands of passengers faced travel chaos yesterday after rail service through the Channel Tunnel was suspended because of a power failure.
19 October 2016
People planning holidays from Gatwick Airport in the run up to Christmas could face travel chaos as unions threaten to strike over a pension dispute.
18 October 2016
Eurostar has said it will cut 12 services from London St Pancras to Paris and Brussels.
15 October 2016
Tourists in Thailand are being advised to "behave respectfully" and wear "sombre" clothing as the country mourns King Bhumibol Adulyadej.
14 October 2016
Holidaymakers are being warned to buy currency in advance as exchange rates being offered are as little as 0.96 euro to the pound at airports.
13 October 2016
Scientists say there is strong evidence air pollution and vitamin D deficiency can cause dementia.
12 October 2016
More people are going on holiday than at any time in the past five years despite terror attacks and the impact of Brexit, according to a study.
11 October 2016
People from across North Carolina had to be rescued from their homes as the downgraded Hurricane Matthew blew out to sea - leaving a trail of destruction in its wake.
04 October 2016
People travelling abroad is on the rise, according to the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO)
08 October 2016
A hurricane pelting the coast of Florida and described as a 'monster' by a local official has brought chaos to the state, with flights cancelled, homes evacuated and theme parks shut.
07 October 2016
Low-cost airline easyJet says its profits will nosedive as terrorist attacks and air traffic control strikes are taking their toll on the company.