Depression is not
a natural part of growing old but rather a medical condition that should be treated aggressively.
Depression is often not diagnosed because of stereotypes that family, caregivers or even health care providers have that the elderly are depressed in general. Furthermore, the elderly may mask their depression by packaging the problem in a physical complaint, so diagnosis can take longer.
The following are typical signs of depression:
- Sleep problems, including too little, too much or rising earlier than desired
- Decreased pleasure and interest in previously enjoyed activities
- Decreased energy or concentration
- Appetite increase or decrease
- Feelings of hopelessness or helplessness
- Thoughts of death or suicide
- Self-destructive and suicidal behavior
If you or a loved one are experiencing the signs of depression, contact your St. Mary's of Michigan health care provider immediately. If you don't have a doctor, call