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What Causes Depression in the Elderly?

Depression in the Elderly

Your loved one’s depression can be caused by:

  • Chronic illness
  • Injury
  • Stressful life events
  • Pain or discomfort
  • Dementia and decline in cognitive functions
  • Loneliness
  • Grief

Some aging adults also experience a reduced sense of purpose, which often causes anxiety and depression.

Aging adults with Alzheimer’s or other dementia often experience depression as their cognitive impairment progresses. Your loved one with dementia may feel sad and often cry, feel desperate and hopeless, experience sudden mood swings, and become restless and easily irritated.

Depression in the elderly can be hard to recognize and diagnose, as it often presents itself in less apparent symptoms. However, some typical signs of depression may also be present. These commonly involve a decrease in energy, loss of interest in usual activities, sleep problems, irritability, feelings of hopelessness and worthlessness, and fatigue.

Also, your elderly loved one may experience difficulties concentrating, memory issues, guilt, and shame. They may have suicidal thoughts or even attempt suicide.

The most effective treatment strategies for depression include medication and psychotherapy.

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Devoted Guardians'
Response to COVID-19

Devoted Guardians is actively monitoring the progression of the coronavirus, COVID-19, to ensure that we have the most accurate and latest information on the threat of the virus. As you know, this situation continues to develop rapidly as new cases are identified in our communities and our protocols will be adjusted as needed.

While most cases of COVID-19 are mild, causing only fever and cough, a very small percentage of cases become severe and may progress particularly in the elderly and people with underlying medical conditions. Because this is the primary population that Devoted Guardians serves, we understand your concerns and want to share with you how our organization is responding to the threat of COVID-19.

We are following updates and procedures from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) State Department of Health, local and county authorities, the Home Care Association of America and other agencies and resources. Our response and plans may adjust according to the recommendations from these organizations.