Depression is a serious mental sickness that affects people of all ages. However, among the elderly, it’s especially important to be aware of the signs of depression, as they may appear differently. Additionally, seniors may be less likely to seek help for depression due to feelings of shame, isolation, or fear.
Depression affects everyone, regardless of age. It might be difficult to spot the symptoms of sadness in your elderly family members, and they may have a hard time recognizing them in themselves. Recognizing some of these indicators of depression and symptoms can assist you to identify depressive behavior among the elderly:
SIGNS/SYMPTOMS OF DEPRESSION
• Lack of Energy
• Feelings of Despair
• Memory Problems
• Loss of Interest
• Thoughts of Suicide
• Weight/Appetite Loss
• Sleep Disturbances
• Drug/alcohol use
• Ignoring Personal Hygiene
• Lack of Motivation
• Self Loathing
These symptoms and signs of depression, on the other hand, might be produced by the harmful side effects of medicines, particularly if you’re taking a lot of them at once. Because we process medications less efficiently as we get older, the elderly are more prone to their adverse side effects.
Certain diseases, as well as certain medical problems, can produce cognitive and attention deficits that mimic symptoms of depression.
MEDICAL CONDITIONS THAT CAN CAUSE SYMPTOMS
• Dementia/Alzheimer’s Disease
• Parkinson’s Disease
• Heart Disease
• Multiple Sclerosis
seniors may be less likely to seek help for depression due to feelings of shame, isolation, or fear.
WHAT TO DO?
Stay healthy – A comprehensive approach to overall mental, physical, and spiritual well-being can significantly reduce depressive symptoms. Getting enough sleep and good sleep are two simple methods to reduce poor sleep. Exercising also raises your spirits by producing endorphins and adrenaline. You don’t need to join a gym to be in excellent form. Cleaning your home, as well as other low-intensity exercises like walking or gardening, has similar health benefits. What you put into your body on the outside is just as essential as what you put into it on the inside. Eating too few calories or eating foods that do not contain enough vitamins and minerals might result in feelings of sadness and lethargy.
Stay engaged – When you’re sad, it’s easy to just sit and watch TV. When you participate in activities with others, though, you may fight depression symptoms by doing so. The more socializing you do, the better you’ll feel. You can also increase your social circle by taking part in events like book discussions, painting sessions, and fitness classes. If you have the time, go for a walk, do some shopping, or see a friend. However, keep in mind that socializing does not always need to be in person. Even spoken words or electronic communication might help you feel better.
Seek help – Feelings of sadness are quite common, so you should never be embarrassed to seek professional help. Because the elderly are more prone to negative side effects from medication, antidepressants should be used with caution. Depression may be relieved with a combination of behavioral and pharmacological therapies. Depression can be effectively treated with therapy and lifestyle modifications. Medication, on the other hand, only targets depressive symptoms rather than the disease’s underlying cause. As a result of behavioral adjustments, your entire life, including your job, social life, and personal life may all change…for the better.
Many seniors may be sad but do not recognize the symptoms and signs of depression, so they have no idea what to do to assist themselves. Just keep in mind that you have the power to influence your emotions.
Avanti Senior Living at Lafayette
Avanti Senior Living at Lafayette provides a pleasant, welcome atmosphere with a variety of on-site services and activities to enjoy. Our residents have access to a fitness center, beauty salon, library, and more. We also help with medical visits, transportation, and errands in addition to assisting with medical appointments.
Avanti Senior Living at Lafayette’s programming is to implement a comprehensive approach to improving the quality of life for our residents. Our focus is on promoting physical, mental, and emotional wellness through a variety of activities and giving residents freedom of choice in a thriving environment.
If you or a loved one are experiencing symptoms of depression, contact us today to learn more about how we can help.