Depression is a problem that often goes unnoticed in senior citizens. It is often confused with aging and decreasing physical abilities. Seniors who were once vibrant, active citizens in society may lose their place as their children grow and friends pass away. Retirement can bring a feeling of isolation. Instead of providing support to their children and loved ones like they once had, seniors may start to feel like they are becoming a burden.
Know the Signs
Being a caregiver, it is important to be aware of the signs of depression to know if your loved one is suffering from depression. Signs of depression include:
- Loss of appetite or weight loss
- Loss of interest in hobbies or family and friends
- Not able to sleep
- Talk of death
- Loss of self worth
Other signs that are predominant in elderly people who are depressed are:
- Signs of stress or anxiety
- Slowed speech
- Neglecting medication, meals, or personal hygiene
Asking someone if they are depressed usually isn’t the best tactic to diagnose the problem. Often seniors do not recognize their depression as being a problem or in many cases don’t want to admit to it. The best thing to do if you are suspicious the reason why they’re slowing down isn’t just from aging, is to encourage them to talk to a doctor, a therapist, or another leader in the community that they are comfortable with if you are concerned.
Escaping the slump of depression is difficult. Medications have recently started to be used to help adults manage their own depression. If you are looking for other ways to overcome depression without medication, a simple way may just be simple socialization. Getting your loved one involved in activities can be a great way to fight depression.
Consider a pet if the person is able to care for one. Having a companion can provide good company and help them have an interest in something.
Depression is not a normal part of getting older. It is a disease that needs to be treated. A great way to get out of a slump is to socialize with other people your age and to change the environment you are currently in.
Socialize to Beat Depression
Assisted living and independent living communities are becoming more of a social scene to target the seniors that are still physically independent. They plan activities and social events and promote interaction with all the residents. If you are concerned about a loved one who is suffering from depression, visiting an assisted living facility may be just the trick to get them back to the healthy and lively state they once were in.
Moving to a community permanently might not be realistic for your situation. If it’s not, consider a respite stay at your local assisted living community.
Either way, SeniorLiving.Net is here to help. With Care Advisors across the country, you can get free personalized help finding a senior living community that’s right for you and your family. Your local Care Advisor can even help you book a respite stay! Call (866) 662-0435 to get connected to your local Care Advisor today.