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There are a number of social and medical conditions that can have a significant impact on senior mental health. At Santa Clarita Home Care Assistance, we know firsthand how important recognizing the signs and symptoms of these conditions is for getting aging adults the help they need. Without proper medical care, these issues can have a significant impact on overall life qualities.
Once driving abilities are lost and mobility starts to decline, seniors face the serious risk of living in isolation. Although basic physical needs continue to be met, seniors living in isolation lack regular social engagement. This can lead to feelings of loneliness, hopelessness, and depression. As an in-home caregiver, if you notice your loved one rarely goes out, does not have social visitors, is unable to track time, loses interest in his or her appearance, and regularly express feelings of hopelessness, this could signify too much time spent alone.
Anxiety is another common issue among the aging demographic. Seniors are often worried about their future life qualities, becoming burdensome to their children and their ability to manage limited retirement funds. In addition to being the result of practical and fairly common concerns, anxiety can also be symptomatic of nutritional deficiencies. Insufficient magnesium in the diet or a failure to get adequate amounts of other essential minerals frequently results in chemical imbalances and mood swings. Anxiety is also common among seniors who have Parkinson’s disease (PD). Seniors with PD tend to have serotonin deficiencies that can negatively impact mood balance if PD is left untreated.
The forgetfulness and general sense of disconnect that Alzheimer’s causes can result in uncharacteristic suspicion and paranoia. As seniors misplace their personal items or find themselves surrounded by people they cannot easily recognize, their behaviors inevitably change. This can lead to unpleasant outbursts and an unwillingness to accept help from close family members among other things. Seeking an official diagnosis and treatment for Alzheimer’s when paranoia, suspicion, forgetfulness and other changes in cognition and behavior are severe is often the best way to mitigate these problems.
Depression is prevalent among aging adults given that these individuals are often confronting a number of unpleasant and unavoidable changes in their physical abilities, mental health, and lifestyles. When there are no medical issues at the heart of depression, learning how to cope with these changes is vital for maintaining an acceptable life quality. Seniors can seek counseling, join support groups or talk with their family members about any appropriate changes in their living arrangements. Confronting challenges head-on will help seniors overcome the associated fears. There is also the potential, however, for depression to be nutrition-related or caused by a decline in serotonin production, which is often the case for adults who have PD. When talking with others about challenging life changes does not alleviate a person’s depression, seeking medical help is often advised.
Most of us realize the importance of maintaining physical health into old age, but overlook the significance of mental and emotional health. Make sure your senior loved one has the necessary resources to maintain a high quality of life with help from Home Care Assistance. We offer flexible hourly care and live-in care, as well as specialized Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, stroke, and dementia home care in Santa Clarita. Additionally, all of our care services include the use of our two proprietary care methods that focus on physical, mental, and emotional health. For more information, call 661.259.9914 and speak with a Care Manager today.