Depression is an extremely complicated condition, especially for senior adults. Getting an accurate diagnosis is vital to making sure that your aging adult gets the help that she needs.
Chronic Pain and Illness Can Cause Depression.
Constant pain, dealing with a chronic illness, or even both at the same time takes a lot of energy out of your senior. It can also wear her down emotionally, leading to depression. This is especially true when there’s no cure or easy solution for your elderly family member to manage her condition in a way that truly gives her relief.
Medication Side Effects Can Be Brutal.
For some health conditions, however, medication provides relief from the worst of the problem. But the side effects that the medication can cause, on the other hand, may not be so generous. Many medications or even combinations of medications can cause depression. Talk with your elderly family member’s doctor about how her medications interact and what kinds of side effects you should watch for with your aging adult.
Loneliness and Isolation Lead to Depression.
Many aging adults spend a lot more time alone than they used to. This can happen due to retirement or because they’ve lost someone close to them. If your senior is spending a lot more time alone than she used to, finding a way to help her stay involved is essential. Volunteering with others in her community can help, but if your elderly family member isn’t very mobile, hiring senior care providers to offer companionship can be an excellent answer.
Fear and Uncertainty May Contribute.
Most people are afraid of what could happen at one point or another. Your elderly family member may be afraid about what is going on with her health, what could happen to her in the future, or whether she’ll have anyone who can help her as her health changes. Talk with your senior about what concerns she has so that you can help her to find solutions now that can make that time less scary.
If you suspect that your senior is depressed, it’s important to get help now rather than later. Talk with her doctor about what could be causing the depression and what you can do about it.