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Lonely shut-in pensioners find coronavirus lockdown ‘crushingly’ difficult

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And as winter approaches, life is only going to get worse for older people, Age UK found. The pandemic has “hit the fast forward button on ageing for millions of older people”, the campaign group said.

Care homes have also been instructed to accept Covid-positive elderly people adding to the pressures on the mental and physical health of residents.

Up to 4.2million (34 percent) of those aged 60-plus feel more anxious since the start of lockdown in March.

More than a quarter say they cannot walk as far as they used to while 20 percent are finding it harder to remember things.

One in five feel less steady on their feet, said a survey of 1,364 people aged 60-plus for the launch of a Winter Resilience Campaign by Age UK.

Almost eight million feel less confident taking public transport while 5.3million are concerned about going to the shops. Most worryingly, 3.3million are nervous about spending time with their family.

Caroline Abrahams, charity director at Age UK, said: “This pandemic is tough for everyone, but older people have the added anxiety of knowing that for them the risks of catching Covid-19 are higher.

“We have rightly heard a lot about the enormous problems facing older people in care homes, but this new research reveals that life is extremely challenging for many cooped up for month after month in their own homes too.

“This research emphasises how important it is that we all rally round the older people in our lives.”

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