Experts say that depression and anxiety are not a natural part of aging. Indeed, anxiety and mood disorders become less common while we age. However, the rates of detection are also lower among seniors. Not many sufferers will seek help to treat their mental health problems. That is why loved ones of a senior experiencing depression or anxiety must pay attention and provide help when they notice an issue.
Risks Factors for Depression and Anxiety
The majority of seniors aren’t depressed. However, those who have a mental disorder which affects their mobility and quality of life are at a greater risk. Health conditions like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, heart disease, a disability, high blood pressure and poor self-perceived health can prompt a mood disorder. Also, depression can occur alongside other ailments such as cancer, diabetes and Parkinson’s disease.
Kinds of Depression
Seniors may experience some kinds of depression.
- Major depression– Symptoms of this depression are serious enough to interfere with sleep, appetite, work, life enjoyment and sleep.
- Minor depression– Symptoms are less severe.
- Dysthymia– This is a persistent, mild depression which may last for at least a couple of years.