ORGANIZATIONS THAT HELP WITH INFORMATION ABOUT DEPRESSION- Part I of a III Part Article
It is estimated that more than 5 million Americans age 65 or older suffer from serious symptoms of depression. Unfortunately the rate of suicides amongst older Americans is rising markedly. Many of us brush off depression in the elderly as a "natural" occurrence, and this is a big mistake. Depression increases the likelihood that a serious physical ailment will worsen. The classic symptoms for depression in the elderly include periods of deep melancholy and a lack of willingness to participate in activities that were previously so enjoyable to the older person. It often seems as if the older person has a total disinterest in doing anything at all. Irritability and apathy seem to pervade most of the time.
Other signs of depression may include a loss of appetite and an increase in memory loss. Another sign may be the desire to be alone and not to be "bothered" by having company around. The ability to get a good night's sleep may be impaired resulting in the individual dozing off frequently during the daylight hours.
Treating depression in the elderly is more complicated than it is in a younger person. Adverse reactions to anti-depressants are much more common in older persons. Since most older people are on some kind of drugs the doctor must be alert to the possibility of adverse reactions that might ensue as a result of the drug combination. Remember that depression is a medical illness, and should not be ignored.
Refer to our Articles: Depression in the Elderly Caused by Medical Disorders and also Depression in the Elderly: Late Onset in Life
The following organizations can provide helpful information about the detection and treatment of depression for people of all ages:
NATIONAL ALLIANCE FOR THE MENTALLY ILL
200 North Glebe Road
Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA)
730 North Franklin St.
Chicago, Ill. 60610
NATIONAL FOUNDATION FOR DEPRESSIVE ILLNESS
P.O. Box 2257
New York, N.Y. 10116
NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF MENTAL HEALTH
5600 Fishers Lane
Rockville, Md. 20857
FOR AN INFORMATIVE AND PERSONAL ARTICLE ON PRACTICAL SUGGESTIONS WHEN SELECTING A NURSING HOME SEE OUR ARTICLE "Selecting a Nursing Home"
Depression in the Elderly- Part II
Depression in the Elderly - Part III
Harold Rubin, BA, CRC, ABD, Guest Lecturer
To e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
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