For the majority of people, the holidays are a time of joy and sharing. While this may be a festive time of year, it can also be the most common time for seniors to experience depression. There are many reasons for this, such as feeling lonely, missing loved ones that have died, feeling old and not needed and having financial limitations. Regardless of the reason for the depression, it is important for seniors to get help when the depression affects how they function on a daily basis.
1. Most feelings of depression around the holidays are temporary. Seniors will be able to continue functioning and will go on with daily activities. However, there are some seniors who will become clinically depressed and will not be able to function. This is when the senior will need some professional help.
2. Seniors who have changes in sleep and eating habits may be depressed. They will also show very little interest in things they usually enjoy. These are key signs that the senior may be suffering from depression.
3. If the depression is ignored and not treated, it can lead to other problems such as an additional loss of independence, premature death, suicidal thoughts and actions and the aggravation of symptoms associated with other illnesses.
4. Caregivers and family members need to watch for depression warning signs around the holidays. These include changes in mood, behavior, habits and weight, inability to concentrate, lack of energy and interest, persistent sadness and withdrawal socially.
5. There are many forms of treatment available to help seniors deal with their depression, but the first step is to notice the symptoms and talk to a doctor.
Source: GMHF Online
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