It’s not enough to text or email. It’s not even enough to telephone. It’s face-to-face encounters that show the beneficial impact of reducing depression in the elderly. 

Quoting from the 2015 published research by Teo, A. et al.:

Clinicians should consider encouraging face-to-face social interactions as a preventive strategy for depression.

That offers enormous challenges for those of us separated by considerable distance from our family loved ones. It’s a challenge though that we must find ways of meeting. In a world now so dominant in electronic communication, face-to-face remains the best way to communicate, as a means for maintaining mental wellbeing in the elderly.