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2 in 5 Seniors Turned to Disney+/Netflix During Pandemic

A new piece of research from Amica Senior Lifestyles, has found that 2 in 5 seniors have tried streaming outlets Disney + and/or Netflix for the first time due to the pandemic.

In the study, 1,400 people from older generations in America and Canada were asked how the pandemic has changed their lifestyles. TV streaming was one key theme from the report.  Participants stated that ‘nostalgia’, ‘mental wellbeing’ and ‘happiness’ are some of the most important reasons they watched such shows.  You can see how the results stacked up in the chart below:

Julie Winn, Senior Clinical Director at Valley Behavioral Health, a mental health service provider, discussed the positive impact streaming services can have on older generations.

“TV streaming has come to the rescue of so many people because it contains different genres of movies. It helps you not get bored, it can fill in as a system for individuals to intellectually try not to manage the regular day to day life challenges, stay associated with mainstream society, experience positive feelings.  Senior citizens who have little or nothing to do can also benefit from streaming on Netflix because there are great comedy movies they can watch and enjoy a good laugh. They are also updated and can discuss trending movies with their peers and family giving them an avenue to socialize.”

A study by Fintech company,  that was published back in August saw similar findings with people struggling to deal with the pandemic.  Their findings showed streaming services were having a positive impact on mental health during the Coronavirus pandemic.

The study found the most popular indirect methods people are spending their money on for the benefit of their mental health are TV and streaming services (51.5%), socializing (48%), music streaming (44%), and food and drink (43%).  In addition, 18% of those surveyed stated streaming services had the most positive impact on their mental health.

Kristie Norwood, PhD, a Licensed Clinical Psychologist explained the mental health implications of TV shows and streaming:

“Television shows can serve as a mechanism for people to mentally avoid dealing with everyday life challenges, remain connected to popular culture, experience positive emotions, and validate aspects of their lives. Through portrayed character experiences, viewers are able to feel a sense of internal connection, validation and normalization when their personal life situations are displayed; this pleasant connection and gratification often triggers dopamine in the brain which causes the behavioral response of continuous streaming, also known as “binge-watching.”

“While streaming within itself does not have deleterious effects, research has shown that excessive levels of streaming can lead to addiction symptoms, anxiety, isolation, loneliness, and guilt.”

You can read more about Self Financial’s study and their findings here.

Michelle Beck
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