Depression – A Health Challenge for Elderly Populations

Depression can be described as the most common mental health challenge for senior and elderly people. This form of medical condition usually have a deep negative influence on all aspects of their life including a certain effects on their family and their friends . Even though depression is widely spread among older adults, it should not be considered a normal part of the aging process. Moreover, it is important that doctors be aware of the prevalence of depression, the challenges of diagnosis. Additionally, health specialists should acknowledge that depression in the seniors can be treated and that treatment can implicate a major breakthrough in functional, social and health aspects. However, before engaging into the process of treatment, it is imperative to understand the main causes for depression.
As we grow older, we often face significant life changes that can increase the risk for depression

The first and most common problem that can cause depression is the potential of having various health problems. These issues can be related to illness and disability; chronic pains combined with cognitive decline and many others. The pain that is generated through the body system can cause a major problem that can result with prolonged dementia.
The second reason is closely related with the first. Many seniors will experience low self-esteem and low motivation. An example can be the constant feelings of purposelessness or loss of identity due to some physical limitations or lack of activities that used to be a significant part of the senior’s life.
Another related depression pattern can be generated with the issue of feeling a high level of loneliness and isolation. Living alone can be a hard for anyone, especially for elderly people that have lost their beloved partner, family members or have a physical impairment that prevents them from socializing. Additional segment that correlates with this generator of depression is the loss of a close family member.  This can include the death of friends, family members, and pets; the loss of a spouse or partner. Situation like these can significantly reduce the motivation for the senior to continue with his life. Various structural symptoms such as a give up feeling, or feeling like having no purpose to live are most common and it is very challenging for clinicians to treat them.

A notable occurring element that can cause depression is the prospect of fear. This depression component can be expressed through various forms such as fear of death or dying; anxiety over financial problems or issues that are health related. The ultimate challenge for doctors and health specialists is complicated due to the nature of the problem. As we are aware, the fear represents a major generator for destructive thinking and it has to turn the tide in situations like these.

On a final note, it is important to emphasize that by understanding the major depression causing elements, doctors and clinicians can have a clear picture about what is the source of the problem thus enabling them to create a proper therapy platform that will successfully threat the depression at the elderly patients.

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