Depression in seniors is not to be taken lightly. Changes that occur as people age – such as the loss of a spouse – can often lead to depression, although it is not considered a normal part of aging, experts say. If the diagnosis is depression, a doctor might recommend therapy or medication.
According to the Website www.NIHSeniorHealth.gov, following are signs of depression:
- feeling nervous or emotionally “empty”
- feelings of excessive guilt or worthlessness
- tiredness or a “slowed down” feeling
- restlessness and irritability
- feeling like life is not worth living
- sleep problems, including trouble getting to sleep, very early morning wakefulness, or sleeping too much
- eating more or less than usual
- having persistent headaches, stomachaches or other chronic pain that does not go away when treated
A number of resources can help family caregivers identify the resources they need to help them assist that senior. One such resource is the Home Instead Senior Care® network, which can provide older adults with the companionship they oftentimes need to brighten their days.