Social Isolation Among Seniors: An Emerging Issue


Social integration and participation of older adults in society are frequently seen as indicators of productive and healthy aging and it is widely accepted that social support has a strong protective effect on health. However, an increasing amount of seniors may be at risk of being socially isolated or lonely. This may be due to a number of factors such as increased likelihood of living alone, death of family members or friends, retirement or poor health. With current trends such as encouraging seniors to live longer at home or in the community, a highly mobile society and fewer children per family, the issue of social isolation takes on a new importance. 


  • Executive Summary
  • Introduction: Social Isolation: An Emerging Issue
  • 1. Definitions of social isolation and loneliness
  • 2. Risk factors for social isolation and loneliness
  • 3. The Effects of Seniors' Social Isolation, Loneliness and Related Concepts on Health and Social Service Usage
  • 4. Current trends that may interact with social isolation and loneliness
  • 5. Volunteering
  • 6. Interventions for social isolations for seniors
  • 7. Policy implications: Future work around social isolation and loneliness in seniors
  • 8. Conclusion
  • References
Contact Person/Organization: 

British Columbia Ministry of Health

Type of Tool:

Publication Date: 

Combatting loneliness and social isolation in older people