Home Instead Blog

Depression & Older People
May 08, 2012

Depression is the single most common disorder in those over 65.  It is common in older people and the symptoms can affect every aspect of one’s life including energy, appetite, sleep, hobbies, work, relationships etc.

Causes and risk factors that contribute include:
  • Loneliness and isolation
  • Reduced sense of purpose
  • Health problems
  • Medications
  • Fear
  • Recent bereavement.

Common signs of depression may include loss of interest in activities, feelings of guilt, a sense of tiredness and fatigue, feeling down, anxiety, loss of sleep, low self confidence, personality changes, feeling like crying, loss of appetite and avoiding contact with other people.

Getting help - asking for help is the first step to recovery – talk to your family doctor who may prescribe medication and/or suggest a suitable type of therapy.

Tips for helping yourself to stay well:
  • Keep in contact with and talk to family and friends;
  • Join a local support group such as Active Age or the ICA (Irish Countrywomen’s Association); 
  • Develop a new hobby; 
  • Eat a balanced diet including plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables;
  • Take regular exercise – such as walking;
  • Avoid alcohol.

For further information on Depression and other health issues, check out  The Irish Pensioners Handbook 2012 – for a free copy, please call 1890 930013 or download a PDF from www.homeinstead.ie