Depression in Elderly Often Difficult to Recognize

Depression in Elderly Often Difficult to Recognize

Most of us are getting back to our regular routines after a busy holiday season. Thankfully, children, careers and hobbies ensure that the transition from holidays to post-holiday living is an easy one.

Unfortunately for many older Americans, daily living can include depression. More than just feeling sad or blue, depression in older adults is more common than many people realize. Even more troubling is the fact that depression in the elderly can be difficult to recognize.

According to the National Institute on Aging’s Depression and Older Adults, there are several causes and risk factors for depression in the elderly. These include:

  1. Genes: People with a family history of depression may be more likely to develop it than those whose families do not have the illness.
  2. Personal history: Older adults who had depression when they were younger are more at risk for developing depression in late life than those who did not have the illness earlier in life.
  3. Brain chemistry: People with depression may have different brain chemistry than those without the illness.
  4. Stress: Loss of a loved one, a difficult relationship or any stressful situation may trigger depression.

If you suspect your elderly parent may suffer from depression, it is important to realize that it is a serious mood disorder that requires treatment. If you are not sure where to turn for advice on getting help for an aging parent, Physicians Choice Private Duty can point you in the right direction. Give us a call at 402-332-2273 to learn more.