Depression in the elderly can happen to anyone at any time. It is sometimes triggered by a life-changing event such as losing a loved one or the loss of a family home. It can be an illness which can build up over a longer period of time for instance, if an individual is finding everyday tasks difficult due to their illness or finding accessing their local community over-tiring, it can become a very depressing cycle for anto find themselves in.
The signs are there with every individual if people are watching and taking note they can range from a change in personality going from usually patient and calm to suddenly quick tempered and aggravated. An individual may lose interest in a hobby which they love or even family and friends whom they love to spend time with.
The more serious signs of depression are loss of appetite and a general lack of interest in their own wellbeing to drinking heavily and thoughts of suicide.
In the UK at present there are many avenues an individual can take to help the symptoms of depression reduce and eventually take a back seat. The best place to start is usually by speaking with the GP and explaining the feelings and experiences which are disrupting your daily life. The GP can refer you to a councillor to sit with and talk through your current situation and feelings.
GPs may also suggest a short term trial of an anti-depressant medication to help alleviate the symptoms along with a course of counselling.
The main thing to remember is that depression is not a weakness or a thing to be ashamed of it is a medical condition that is treatable and manageable. And it can affect any one of us at some stage in our lives. Gone are the days of hiding these conditions in our families and from ourselves.
The first step to recovery is taking control of the situation and deciding to overcome the issue.