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FSU expert available to comment on psychological effects of social isolation during COVID-19 pandemic

FSU Associate Professor of Sociology Dawn Carr. (FSU Photo/Bruce Palmer)
FSU Associate Professor of Sociology Dawn Carr. (FSU Photo/Bruce Palmer)

Millions of Americans are staying home to “flatten the curve” of coronavirus cases.

Among those avoiding other people are many older Americans, whose age puts them at a greater risk of serious complications from a COVID-19 infection. That isolation — for seniors and for everyone else — can bring loneliness and frustration.

A Florida State University researcher is available to talk about how the sudden requirement to avoid in-person socializing during the COVID-19 pandemic affects older adults and others.

Dawn Carr, associate professor of sociology and faculty associate at the Pepper Institute on Aging and Public Policy
(850) 644-2833; dccarr@fsu.edu
Carr researches factors that improve older adults’ ability to remain healthy and active for as long as possible. Her work examines the complex ways important events and transitions (such as employment changes, retirement, volunteering, social losses and caregiving) shape physical, psychological, cognitive and social health in later life.

“Older adults, relative to other age groups, are in a more precarious situation. Not only are they more likely to be seriously impacted by COVID-19, they are much more likely than other age groups to have been socially isolated to begin with, placing them at added risk. Consequently, we need to not only be identifying ways to decrease risks of contracting the virus, we need to ensure that they stay socially connected with others in their community even though they can’t interact with people face-to-face.”