Our minds and bodies go through many changes as we age, and unfortunately, one of the most common conditions that affects the elderly is depression. Isolation and limited mobility are major causes of depression, as well as a declining state of health, deterioration of the memory, and certain medications that are taken for medical conditions.
As a guide for concerned family members, these are some of the telltale signs of depression in older adults.
Signs of Depression in the Elderly
It’s important that family members remain ever-present in the lives of older adults, no matter how busy their lives get. Children and grandchildren who grew up with these beloved men and women are often best-suited to detect personality and behavior changes and take action before it’s too late.
Depression is a serious and debilitating disorder that affects people of all ages and backgrounds. It is much more than just being sad or in a bad mood from time to time. Depression is a condition of hopelessness, helplessness and an inability to control and balance out negative thoughts.
These are some of the telltale signs that an elderly person that you love may be depressed.
- Reduced appetite
- Increased number of complaints and irritability
- Loss of interest in favorite hobbies and activities
- Neglecting personal care and hygiene
- Neglecting household duties
- Lack of energy and motivation
- Unexplained pains and aches
- Sleeping more than usual or needed
- A fixation on death and thoughts of suicide
The Connection between Isolation and Depression
Many senior citizens live in assisted care facilities and nursing homes, and although they occasionally receive visits from friends and family, these can be very lonely places. Even seniors who maintain their independence and remain living at home struggle with isolation as their friends and spouses pass away and family members move away to pursue their own lives.
Whether through community organizations, church groups, social clubs, or family commitments, it is so important that seniors be surrounded by unconditional love to help them value life and cherish the memories they’ve accumulated over the years.
Senior Citizen Mobility and Depression
Limited mobility plays a key role in the quality of life of older adults, especially individuals who were very active in their younger years. Not being able to get around like you once did, and enjoy an active lifestyle, can be incredibly frustrating and disheartening. Over time, these feelings of frustration can lead to a loss of interest in favorite hobbies and ultimately depression.
One thing that you can do for your loved one to prevent depression from setting in is to suggest and arrange mobility solutions that allow him or her to maintain independence, dignity, and happiness. At Dermer Stairlifts, we understand how challenging and worrisome it can be to care for a loved one who is getting older, and we have many senior citizen mobility solutions to fit every lifestyle and preference.