The Top 3 Mental Health Issues For Seniors
There are a variety of physical health issues that can arise as we age, but often we forget about the numerous mental illnesses that are also possible. General forgetfulness is naturally part of the aging process, but there comes a time when symptoms such as depression, anxiety, and a change in eating habits can show signs of a more serious mental problem.
1. Senior Depression
Depression is one of the most prevalent mental health disorders among older adults. If left untreated, it can result in various other physical and mental impairments and even lead to a decrease in social functioning capability.
Symptoms may include:
- Persistent sadness
- Problems with sleeping
- Physical pain
- Noticeable distancing from previously enjoyed activities
Generalized anxiety is also a mood-related disorder commonly seen among the elderly that is often paired with depression. Anxiety comes in many forms such as:
Symptoms often include:
- Excessive worry
- Increased nervousness or unease
- Chronic fatigue
- Difficulty falling/staying asleep
- Increased muscle tension
Bulimia and anorexia nervosa are becoming increasingly common among the elderly population. These disorders can stem from a variety of underlying behavioral or psychological problems and often go undetected, making them especially dangerous.
Symptoms can include:
- Unexplained fluctuation in weight
- Noticeable weakness
- Loss of appetite
- An increase of unopened food in the kitchen
If your loved one shows signs of mental illness, notify their doctor immediately. It can be difficult to pinpoint what mental illness your loved one may be dealing with, so it's important to visit a medical expert to determine the cause and receive a proper diagnosis.