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If you care for an elderly person or your parent recently moved into a Boynton Beach assisted living facility, you may be concerned about their physical health and wellbeing. However, you also need to think about their mental health and the possibility that they could develop a depression. Of course, you’ll need to encourage them to see a doctor if you’re concerned but you need to know some of the basics about depression in older people. In this blog post, we’ll look at why depression occurs, why it is often overlooked in elderly people, and how you can identify the signs.

Why Seniors Often Don’t Get the Help They Need for Depression at a Boynton Beach Assisted Living Facility

Older people often don’t recognize that they may have depression and they may not think to discuss their feelings with a medical professional. Some individuals assume that depression is a natural part of aging while others think they have good reasons to feel down. Also, older adults who are isolated are more likely to develop depression and there may not be anyone around to notice the symptoms. Another factor is that older people are often reluctant to talk about their emotions. Some also don’t realize that their physical symptoms are indicators of depression.

Contrary to what some people believe, depression isn’t inevitable as one gets older. It’s also not a sign of weakness and it can happen to anyone. However, it can be triggered by some of the changes that occur as one gets older such as retiring, losing loved ones or becoming ill.

Symptoms of Depression in Elderly People

You’ll be better able to recognize depression in your elderly loved one if you know the signs and symptoms. These include:

  • Loss of interest in hobbies or socializing
  • Unexplained or worsened aches and pains
  • Loss of appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Sadness
  • Expressions of hopelessness or helplessness.
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Slowed speech or movement
  • Memory problems
  • Fixation on death
  • Neglecting personal care

Notably, while sadness is a common symptom in younger people who are depressed, physical symptoms are the most common indicator of depression in elderly people.

Medical Conditions That Can Lead to Depression in Elderly People

In addition to major life changes, depression can be due to medical issues. Sometimes it’s a direct effect; other times it’s a psychological response to a physical illness. Chronic medical conditions, especially those that are painful, severe, or disabling, can either lead to depression or make existing depression symptoms worse. Some of the illnesses that can result in depression include:

  • Cancer
  • Heart disease
  • Stroke
  • Thyroid disorders
  • Parkinson’s Disease
  • Diabetes
  • Dementia
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Vitamin B12 deficiency

Depression can also be a side effect of the medications taken for a number of conditions.

Rest Assured that a Boynton Beach Assisted Living Facility will Assist in Your Loved One’s Care

Living alone can bring on or exacerbate depression. Courtyard Gardens Senior Living is the best assisted living facility in Florida. We probably several opportunities for residents to interact with their peers and take part in stimulating activities. Our highly trained staff also assist them with managing medication. Contact us today to learn more about what we have to offer at our Boynton Beach assisted living facility.

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