Sitting Alone

Sharing – Depression and Older Adults

I think this is something that often gets overlooked. It shouldn’t be:

“Sometimes older people who are depressed appear to feel tired, have trouble sleeping, or seem grumpy and irritable. Confusion or attention problems caused by depression can sometimes look like Alzheimer’s disease or other brain disorders. Older adults also may have more medical conditions, such as heart disease, stroke, or cancer, which may cause depressive symptoms. Or they may be taking medications with side effects that contribute to depression.”

If we think about it at all, one of the things we know about depression is that it feeds on isolation, and while we spend a lot of time looking at young people who are struggling with relationships, or adjusting to life changes like going away to college, wed do well to remember that older people who have lost a partner, or who’s health issues have limited their ability to get out are quite susceptible to the same kind of isolation, and we should be thinking about depression with that age group as well, especially as it may look differently than the stereotypes we hold in our heads.

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