Home Care Blog | August 20, 2016
Private Duty Nursing and Managing Depression | The number of seniors in America is growing and will continue to grow for the next several decades as the baby boomer generation transitions into retirement. In fact, it was just the other year that the tail end of the Boomers turned 50. One of the unfortunate realities of aging is that friends, loved ones, and family members move away or pass on. Also, health issues are not always kind, and finances may not be what we dreamed they would be. Sometimes, a combination of these changes leads to a medical condition called depression.
As the number of seniors has increased over the past decade, the number of cases of depression has risen dramatically as well. Dr. Gary Kennedy, chief of geriatric psychiatry at Montefiore Medical Center and Albert Einstein College of Medicine calls this situation a “major public health problem” and worries that many doctors and health professionals who care for the elderly are unprepared and/or unable to detect signs of depression.
One of the reasons this situation is so serious is that depression is linked to cardiac disease, heart attacks, stroke, diabetes, and suicide. In fact, seniors still comprise less than 13 percent of the total population, but they account for nearly a quarter of the nation’s suicide deaths.
There are a number of benefits to aging in place. That said, when seniors who live by themselves are battling depression, the disease may go unnoticed for a long time. Not only does depression often lead to social isolation, but seniors suffering from depression typically do not seek help…after all, they are depressed.
Private home nursing is one of the most effective ways to combat senior depression. Not only are nurses skilled in the identification of the disease, but they are also licensed to work with the physicians in its treatment. From medication management and administration to social and emotional support, home nursing services go way beyond the stereotyped sponge-baths and temperature checks. Of course, personal care and therapeutic support are available as well.
If your loved one is suffering from depression, or you are worried that they might be, Comfort Keepers skilled nursing services just might be the answer for which your loved one has been waiting.