Research shows that the prevalence of depression among older adults is almost 30% higher than among the general adult population. Who exactly is most often among the people with this diagnosis? aif.ru told about this Head of the Department of Therapy, Head of the Department for Studying the Pathogenetic Aspects of Aging at the National Medical Research Center for Therapy and Preventive Medicine of the Russian Ministry of Health Svetlana Burns.
Who is at risk for depression?
Those at particular risk are “workaholics,” men and single people. Depression is not just a bad mood. This is a serious mental illness that not only reduces the quality of life, but also aggravates the course of existing somatic (“physical”) diseases.
Depression in older people can be caused not only by external factors, but also by chronic diseases – Alzheimer’s disease, thyroid diseases, diabetes, as well as taking certain medications. In any case, if these symptoms appear, you should not postpone your visit to the doctor! But if at the age of 30 you already feel 100, contact your local doctor, take preventive measures, and give up bad habits. This will help maintain your health and improve your quality of life.
How to help elderly relatives overcome possible depression?
There are various physical and emotional changes associated with age. Some people may experience physical inconveniences or illnesses, but this does not mean that every older person experiences unsatisfactory health.
Social interaction is an important aspect of healthy aging. Regular interaction with other people, especially family and friends, helps reduce the risk of depression and loneliness, increases feelings of satisfaction and improves quality of life.
To help older adults enjoy their aging years, encourage them to be active and social. This could be participation in interest clubs, various hobbies, meetings with friends and relatives. Older adults can also be encouraged to learn new skills or engage in volunteer activities that help maintain a sense of worth.
To prolong the life of your elderly relatives, take an active part in their lives and involve older people in the problems and joys of your life – walk together, watch films, discuss them together, go to the theater, visit.