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Caregivers of Older Adults Blog | Depression

Depression in the Elderly - Could it be Seasonal Affective Disorder?

By mmLearn.org on Mon, Dec 18, 2017 @ 04:29 PM

Long after the reds, greens and golds of the holiday season have faded away, many seniors are left with something else: The winter blues. While for some this is merely a temporary funk, for others it may be a medical condition known as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Here’s what all caregivers need to know about SAD and depression in the elderly, along with along with tips for boosting senior spirits during this sometimes dark time of year.

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How to Help the Elderly in Dealing with Holiday Loneliness

By mmLearn.org on Wed, Dec 06, 2017 @ 03:16 PM

An abundance of seasonal songs may enthuse over all things merry, bright, happy and joyous during the holidays. However, the truth is that feelings of loneliness may be heightened at this time of year—particularly for older adults. Here’s a closer look at the phenomenon, along with caregiver tips aimed at helping seniors cope with holiday loneliness.

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Coping with Depression and Grief After Losing a Loved One

By Jennifer Scott - Guest Blogger on Mon, May 01, 2017 @ 02:07 PM

Losing a loved one is one of the hardest things we go through, and it can lead to depression, anxiety, suicidal thoughts, and even substance abuse. For seniors, learning to live without someone who has been a part of your life (possibly for decades) might seem impossible at first; the grief feels insurmountable and can cause you to isolate yourself from your friends and family, lose sleep, change your eating habits, and have trouble concentrating.

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Seniors and Depression - The Signs of Post Holiday Blues

By mmLearn.org on Wed, Jan 04, 2017 @ 11:40 AM

You may have heard warnings that suicides among seniors rise during the holiday season. However, this is actually a widely perpetuated myth according to the Centers for Disease Control, based on data from the Annenberg Public Policy Center. In fact, suicide rates are actually at their lowest in December, but they do peak afterward -- a phenomenon which some experts attribute to a letdown from the holidays. Read More

How To Care For A Loved One Who Suffers From Chronic Pain

By Jennifer McGregor - Guest Blogger on Mon, Oct 24, 2016 @ 09:00 AM

 

Photo via Pixabay by Geralt

Caring for a loved one who suffers from chronic pain can be overwhelming at times even for the most patient individuals. It’s important to remember, however, that there are certain things to take into consideration when caring for someone who is in pain for most of their day, including the fact that believing in their suffering is imperative.

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Caregiver Help: Understanding Grief and Loss

By mmLearn.org on Wed, Mar 18, 2015 @ 02:54 PM

Grief is a fact of life: nearly everyone has to deal with loss during their lifetime. Grief doesn't just pertain to the death of a loved one, it can occur in response to the loss of anything dear to a person -- from a family pet to a job, to divorce or the loss of a home. Unfortunately, seniors are particularly vulnerable to grief...and its complications.

While grief is natural, it's also largely individualistic: there's no right or wrong way to grieve, although some methods can help the grieving process while others can hinder it. If your aging loved one is experiencing the sadness associated with loss, here are some things you can do to help facilitate the grieving -- and healing -- process.

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Aging in Place: Often a Lonely Place to Live

By mmLearn.org on Fri, Feb 13, 2015 @ 11:51 AM

Portrait_Of_The_Elderly_Woman_at_Bus_StopIt was an early morning phone call from a concerned neighbor. She had been out for her evening walk the night before and noticed an elderly woman standing near the street. The woman summoned her over and proceeded to talk at length about her husband who had recently passed away then invited her into her nearby home. Although the neighbor did not accept the invitation, she felt the woman's attempt for attention was cause for alarm. In pastoral care within a large church community I've learned that every day brings to light challenging situations that very often have no immediate or concrete solutions. One of these areas of concern is the number of elders living alone with no family living close by. While aging in place at home is often the preferred choice for many; when there is a situation of declining health of an older person living alone, there is much more cause for worry. This is especially true if the person suffers from some form of dementia.

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Recognizing the Signs of Holiday Depression in Older Adults

By mmLearn.org on Thu, Nov 20, 2014 @ 03:26 PM


The holidays can be a difficult and emotional time of year for some seniors. Seniors who are no longer able to travel to see friends and family are faced with the reality of their disabling condition. It is important as a caregiver to recognize this type of depression in older adults, and come up with ideas that might cheer them up. There are several things that can be done to get the senior smiling and in the holiday cheer.

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6 Tips For Preventing Social Isolation for Seniors

By Cyndy Marsh on Tue, Jun 24, 2014 @ 04:21 PM

The kids walked by her apartment twice a day. She sat by the window every morning watching; remembering and sometimes wishing they might stop by some day. Every afternoon they would parade down the sidewalk again and every once in a while one of them would glance over to the window where she sat and perhaps offer a slight smile or wave. The kids never really thought much about the old woman in apartment 21; they just strolled by. 

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Mental Illness in Seniors: Are they suffering in silence?

By Cyndy Marsh on Wed, May 21, 2014 @ 02:02 PM

“Despite great strides in our understanding of mental illness and vast improvements in the dialogue surrounding it, too many still suffer in silence.” This is the very first sentence in this year’s Presidential Proclamation for National Mental Health Awareness Month.  As America’s population ages, the need for mental and behavioral health services continues to grow.  Unfortunately there are many myths about aging and mental disorders, such as anxiety and depression being normal signs of aging.  Too often such generalized statements are the cause of older adults being under diagnosed or overlooked for problems that are very treatable.  However, even the normal physical and emotional stresses that go along with aging can be risk factors for mental illnesses like anxiety and depression. 

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