Should Your Mom Have Social Media Accounts?
July 22, 2020
Around 72 percent of the adult population has at least one social media account in order to socialize and connect with friends and family. That accounts for adults ages 18 and up. What about older adults? About 40% of the men and women ages 65 and up have one or more social media accounts.
Facebook is the most popular social media site for older adults with 46 percent of that age group using it. Pinterest (15 percent),YouTube (38 percent),LinkedIn (11 percent),and Instagram (8 percent) round out the top five. Your mom wants to embrace social media. Is it a good idea?
The Benefits to Social Media
For keeping in touch with family and friends, social media is very useful. You can share photos, send messages, and see what others are up to. You can comment on the posts and pictures your friends and family share.
Sites like Facebook make it easy to see videos and photos of the grandchildren growing up. If you live in another country or state, your mom can watch videos of her grandchildren's school performances or games. She can share photos of herself with you.
She can also read the news, keep up with community activities, and post items for sale on some social media sites. On Instagram and Facebook, she can see photos of meals at local restaurants, see menus, and find instructions on ordering takeout or delivery.
YouTube is good for watching videos of interest. She can subscribe and make sure that the person's videos are in her feed so that she doesn't miss anything. All of this is helpful, but there's also a downside.
Safety is an Issue
When she's on social media, your mom needs to think about safety. She cannot invite strangers to interact with her. If she gets a request, she can't let her curiosity get the best of her. Some strangers are looking for older adults to scam.
Someone needs to go over her privacy settings with her. They need to make sure nothing changes from time to time when the site is upgraded. It's also important to make sure she hasn't gone in and changed settings on her own.
When you live far away, it may be hard to keep up with her social media settings. You could ask her for her password and log-in information. You could also hire home care aides to spend time with her. Caregivers can monitor her time spent on social media and adjust settings when needed. Call a home care agency to discuss companionship services and help with organization when your mom's online.
If you or your loved one is looking for Home Care in Los Gatos, CA, please call Familiar Surroundings Home Care.
Santa Clara County: (408) 979-9990
San Mateo County: (650) 353-9777
Santa Cruz County: (831) 480-3990