It is quite common for elderly loved ones to experience depression. The signs and symptoms can be easy to misinterpret. The stages of depression are difficult for the elderly. They are also difficult for children and other family members to identify.
It is easy to associate symptoms with normal expectancies of aging. However, depression is real and could lead to serious health issues if gone untreated. Early detection and learning to cope with depression is an important part of treatment. Seniors display a variety of signs and symptoms that family members may not always identify.
It is easy to confuse physical illness with emotional illnesses or depression. Seniors will typically begin to display signs of depression before the condition gets too bad. If your elderly loved one begins displaying one or more of the following, they may be experiencing an onset of depression.
- Sudden sadness: if you’ve noticed that an elderly person is more sad than usual, it could be due to depression.
- Extreme fatigue: elderly people who are more tired than usual, without being involved in increased physical activities, could possibly be going through depression.
- Easily irritated: seniors who are usually easy going but have grown extremely irritable may be depressed. Try to be patient with them, as they are experiencing feelings that they don’t understand.
- Isolating themselves from friends and family: seniors who choose to spend time alone instead of with family may be going through depression. Glendale residential care center coordinators work with residents to help them overcome this phase of depression. Encourage your loved ones to spend as much time as possible with those who love them. If necessary, seek professional counsel to help you cope with the changes.
- Weight loss and loss of appetite: it is not uncommon for seniors to eat less as they age. Many may be inspired to follow healthier eating habits or lead more active lifestyles. Depression may cause sudden weight loss that is not a result of healthy eating or exercise. Depressed seniors are likely to skip meals or not eat their food when served. They may pick at the items on the plate without consuming enough to maintain their healthy weight. Glendale care center nutritionist and counseling specialists can help with this stage of depression.
Depression can be accompanied by several changes in daily living. If you notice your elderly loved one is experiencing the above signs, consider seeking counsel from an experienced professional. Getting them help as soon as possible can help them return to a happy and healthy lifestyle.
If your elderly loved one is displaying signs of depression, contact Broadview Residential Care Center at (818) 246-4951 to learn more about how we can help keep them engaged and happy.