For some seniors, the golden years are not bright, but obscured with depression. As years pass, social and psychological factors play a major role in depressive disorders among persons over the age of 50. According to studies conducted by the National Institute of Health, over 80% of seniors have had a depressive episode. Causative factors are many and individualized. For some, a severe depressive episode may be triggered by the loss of a pet, while others would not be impacted in the same way.
Understanding the Basics of Depression
If you are caring for an elderly person it's a good idea to try and understand the many conflicts faced by seniors. Death of loved ones and close friends, losing independence and financial concerns can all lead to having depressive episodes. Depression comes in many forms and some will call it a part of getting old. Take caution because this is not true. There is no empirical evidence to suggest that increased age, on its own, will produce a depressive episode.
Get Professional Advice
The best thing to do is discuss any concerns that you may have with the senior involved and her physician to rule out any biological causes. Speak with any friends that she may have and ask if they have noticed any changes that would be considered unusual for her personality. If she resides with you, take note of any changes in her everyday moods. This will help you spot any signs of depression in a quick manner.