So, we thought we’d compile some tips for dealing with loneliness and how your Synapptic device can help.
- Stay connected with people around you
It’s important to try and keep in touch with friends and family, as a friendly chat can sometimes make all the difference.
Synapptic can help you stay connected in several ways:
By phone – Phones calls are easy to make with Synapptic, because all numbers are read out to you as you type them in. Or better still, save your important contacts in your Address Book, so it’s easy to store all your numbers in one safe place.
By text – Sometimes people don’t always have time for a chat on the phone, when you call. So why not drop someone a text message, by following the simple Text Message menu and have the message read out to you as you type? That way, you can just check in with someone or even arrange a phone call at a time that suits you both.
By email – Simply follow the Email menu and compose your email. This is a great way to stay in touch, if you want to write a longer message, include links to other online resources and attach documents and photos. Once again, Synapptic’s Address Book allows you to store all your important email addresses on one safe place.
By social media – Synapptic makes it easy to access social media channels, like Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp. Many people choose to stay in touch via social media, as it’s a great way to send messages, join groups, access interesting content on specific topics and make free phone and video calls.
Go to the Social option on the Main menu and select the app you want to use. When you open an app, Synapptic Reader will automatically start, so that everything on the page will be read out to you, as you find your way around.
By video call – These are a great way of making contact feel more personal, especially if family and friends live at a distance or even on the other side of the world. Synapptic makes it easy to make video calls through Zoom, Skype, WhatsApp and Facebook. Just select the WhatsApp option on the Main menu, or go to the Toolbox menu in Synapptic and select the App Launcher to access Zoom calls. Or select the Social option from the Main menu, then select the Facebook option for Facebook calls or the Skype option for Skype calls. All these video calls are free!
- Join a group
Joining a group, particularly when you have shared interests, is a great way to make connections and meet people. Groups can be online, offline or in-person.
Here are some of the ways Synapptic can help you find and create groups:
Online – Use the Synapptic Web Browser menu to gather information from the internet, about groups you may be interested to join. For example, visiting your local council’s website could help you find groups and activities in your area.
Or alternatively, find groups online using social media apps like Facebook. There are also many groups created on WhatsApp, between friends and even within communities. Ask neighbours and friends if they know of any local groups you could join. You’ll need a mobile number and then you can be added to a group.
Or use Synapptic to explore YouTube, a video sharing online community. There are so many interests to explore, from cookery, to crafting, to book reviews, cars and so much more! Many YouTube creators also run courses and communities that you could join.
Offline – You could also join a support group. These are usually groups that offer telephone support. Check out the RNIB’s Talk & Support Befriending Groups here: https://www.rnib.org.uk/sight-loss-advice/talk-and-support Explore their information using your Synapptic Web Browser and store their details in your Synapptic Address Book, for quick access.
- Do things you enjoy
Fill your time with activities you enjoy and this could stop you from focusing on feelings of loneliness and thereby improve your wellbeing.
Here are a few ways Synapptic can help:
Reading books – use Synapptic to easily search, download and play audio books from the RNIB Reading Services Library. This is free to access and contains over 30,000 books. Just visit the RNIB website her: https://readingservices.rnib.org.uk/Account/Register Simply register an account and start reading.
Listening to the radio – Easily search and listen to a local, national or international radio station, using Synapptic. Simply go to the Entertainment menu and select the Internet Radio option. We’ve picked 1,000 of the best UK radio stations, along with other key stations from around the world.
YouTube – Explore or develop a new interest on YouTube. There are millions of online videos to watch or listen to, if you want to build upon an interest you already have, or explore a new one. Just go to the Social menu in Synapptic and select the YouTube option.
Other useful resources
RNIB’s Sight Loss & Wellbeing resources at https://www.rnib.org.uk/sight-loss-advice/sight-loss-and-wellbeing/guides-good-mental-health/loneliness
The NHS’s ‘Every Mind Matters’ webpage at https://www.nhs.uk/every-mind-matters/lifes-challenges/loneliness
We hope this blog has given you some ideas for how to combat loneliness with your Synapptic device, during Mental Health Awareness week and beyond.