It isn't unusual for individuals to develop depression as they grow older, and while it is not a normal and expected aspect of aging, it is more common in older people. Loss of a spouse or child, changes in lifestyle, memories of happy times - all of these things understandably cause people to feel a bit sad or depressed at times. Health issues can also contribute to depression, and pain as well. Some who age feel as though they no longer have a purpose, and finding a new meaning in life can be difficult.
At Care Indeed, our San Francisco caregivers are well aware of the symptoms of depression in the elderly. These symptoms may include, but are not limited to:
Depression isn't always caused by aging, loss of a loved one, loneliness, or a lifestyle change. It can also be caused by certain medical conditions, including cancer, diabetes, stroke, dementia, multiple sclerosis, heart disease, or a thyroid disorder. There are also medications that may contribute to depression or even cause it, as the elderly often become sensitive to medications due to metabolism and how the body processes drugs. Medications such as opiates, blood pressure medicine, steroids, valium or other anxiety/sleep medications, estrogen, and drugs to control high cholesterol can worsen depression.
After retirement, many who are aging feel a loss of purpose. At a certain age, some may not be capable of driving safely anymore, which takes away some of a person's independence. Grief over the death of a spouse or other family member, or even a much loved pet can lead to depression.
It's very important for those who are elderly to engage socially and stay active. A short walk outdoors each day can help ease depression. Having someone to play a game of cards with or simply talk with can make someone who is aging feel as though he/she is still connected.
Never think that depression is normal, and simply a part of aging. If you are the family of an elderly mother, father, aunt, uncle, or other loved one who shows signs of depression, keep in mind you don't have to try to deal with it all on your own. In home caregivers can provide companionship during meals, assist with reading, puzzles, painting, or other hobbies, and do something as simple as engage in conversation. Essentially, lots of love and support can go a long way in helping those who are depressed feel better and helping them cope with life, ultimately.
To learn more about our home care services and how our caregivers can help, give Care Indeed a call today.
At Care Indeed, we believe that when our caregivers, our clients and our clients’ family members are facing challenges, information and education are absolutely vital. That is why our Care Blog is focused on providing the knowledge needed to understand the ins and outs of common diseases, care techniques and even training opportunities.
We want to be able to support those who need help with day-to-day tasks with interesting tidbits and advice that help to provide peace of mind, know-how and an entertaining read. As you read through each one of our blogs, know that the support you need is just a click away. Whether an individual just wants a friendly face to catch up with over a cup of tea, or they need some more support due to a health diagnosis, our professionals are available 24/7.