Friday, August 21, 2009

Social Media: Fountain of Youth?

Even as a true believer in the power of social media in healthcare, I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw a headline on a Web site that said, "Social Media May Increase Life Span."

Okay, I've heard that fiber may help increase your life span. And exercise. And a healthy, low fat diet. Even sex.

But social media? Come on, now. I mean, really.

Yet that's just what the story said.

According to a study from the Karolinska Institute in Sweden; social media, email and sites like Google can help seniors to maintain their mental acuity.

The study says social isolation is one of the main causes of physical deterioration and major risk factor for dementia. And social media provides the old folks with an outlet to exercise their brains, connect to old friends and make new ones.

Of course, while they're reanimating their brain cells online, it wouldn't hurt for them to also take plenty of that fiber, exercise liberally and adhere to the aforementioned healthy, low fat diet.

Facebook's fastest-growing segment is people over 55. In fact, this group has grown more than 500 percent over the past six months and will eventually surpass high school students.

So perhaps it's no coincidence that my own father recently surprised me with an invitation to be his Facebook friend.

Here's to his health.

– Mark

SubscribeBookmark and Share

No comments:

Post a Comment