Diagnosis and treatment of depression in the elderly

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Diagnosis and treatment of depression in the elderly

What other problems affect treatment of depression in the elderly? Clinical depression in the elderly is common. Late-life depression affects about 6 million Americans age 65 and older. The likely reason is that the elderly often display symptoms of depression differently.

Depression in the elderly is also frequently confused with the effects of multiple illnesses and the medicines used to treat them.

Diagnosis and treatment of depression in the elderly

How does depression in the elderly differ from depression in younger adults? Depression impacts older people differently than younger people. In the elderly, depression often occurs with other medical illnesses and disabilities and lasts longer.

Diagnosis and treatment of depression in the elderly

Depression in the elderly often increases their risk of cardiac diseases. Studies of nursing home patients with physical illnesses have shown that the presence of depression substantially increases the likelihood of death from those illnesses.

Depression also has been associated with increased risk of death following a heart attack.

Depression in the Elderly: Not a Normal Part of Aging

For that reason, making sure that an elderly person you are concerned about is evaluated and treated is important, even if the depression is mild.

Depression also increases the risk of suicideespecially elderly white men. The suicide rate in people ages 80 to 84 is more than twice that of the general population. The National Institute of Mental Health considers depression in people age 65 and older to be a major public health problem.

Depression in Older Adults: Recognizing the Signs of Elderly Depression and Getting Treatment

In addition, advancing age is often accompanied by loss of social support systems due to the death of a spouse or siblings, retirement, or relocation of residence.

As a result, effective treatment often gets delayed, forcing many elderly people unnecessarily struggle with depression. Sneaky Depression Triggers in Pictures Symptoms of Depression Depression is an illness that involves the body, mood, and thoughts and affects the way a person eats and sleeps, the way one feels about oneself, and the way one thinks about things.

Symptoms of depression also include feelings of worthlessness.Geriatric depression can worsen the problems associated with aging. It isn’t always easy to diagnose, but proper treatment can greatly increase your quality of life.

Depression can occur in the elderly, but it is not a normal part of aging.

Recognizing the Signs of Elderly Depression and Getting Treatment

While most people experience periods of sadness at times, depression is a treatable medical condition. The diagnosis and treatment of mood symptoms in this population remains a challenge for physicians (Harman et al., ).

It is important to recognize and treat these neuropsychiatric symptoms, as they result in increased morbidity, mortality and health care costs (Janzing et al., ). These conditions often make the diagnosis and treatment of depression in the elderly more challenging.

Contributing factors and prevention

Denial. Many elderly people, and even some caregivers, may assume that a certain amount of. Depression in the elderly population is a common occurrence, yet the diagnosis and treatment seem to slip show more content Finally, older people tend to have more anxiety present in their depression than younger patients do (winter ).

Exercise programmes for the elderly can also be effective in depression prevention. Diagnosis and treatment There are effective treatments for moderate and severe depression.

Depression in the Elderly: Not a Normal Part of Aging