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4208 97 St NW #101 Edmonton, AB T6E 5Z9, Canada

About Comfort Keepers

Comfort Keepers provides award-winning in-home care for seniors and other adults in need of assistance with daily activities. Our highly trained and dedicated caregivers can help your loved one stay in their home for as long as safely possible—a dream come true for many elders.

Areas Served

Uplifting In-Home Care Services for Seniors & Other Adults Right Where You Need It. Comfort Keepers Edmonton, AB provides in home care services and senior care in the following cities in Edmonton: Edmonton

Information Centre

Uplifting In-Home Care Services for Seniors & Other Adults Right Where You Need It. Comfort Keepers Edmonton, AB provides in home care services and senior care in the following cities in Edmonton: Edmonton

Senior Health and Well-Being: The Truth About Depression in Seniors

Senior Health and Wellbeing  |  May 14, 2024

Senior Male seated and looking into distance | Senior Health and WellBeing - The Truth About Depression in Seniors | Comfort Keepers Edmonton | BLOG POST

What Every Senior in Edmonton, AB Needs to Know About Depression and Mental Health

Depression in Senior Citizens | Depression is a common problem among older adults, but it is NOT a normal part of aging. Studies show that most seniors feel satisfied with their lives, despite having more illnesses or physical problems.

#DYK – 10 to 15% of seniors suffer from depression in Canada. The percentage of women suffering from depression is almost double that of men.

Seniors with depression feel more than just sad or blue. It is a common but serious mood disorder that needs real treatment. Never view it as a sign of a person’s weakness or a character flaw – or think you can “turn it off”. Depression is an illness with serious consequences.

Senior Grief vs. Senior Depression 

Grief after the loss of a loved one is a normal reaction and generally does not require professional mental health treatment. Major life changes, that occur as we age, may cause unrest, uneasiness, stress, and sadness. 

Moving from work into retirement, or dealing with a serious illness can leave people feeling down or anxious. After a period of adjustment, many older adults can regain their emotional balance, but others do not and may develop depression.

Depression Impacts Seniors Differently Than Younger People

Depression is associated with an increased risk of cardiac diseases and an increased risk of death from illness. Depression also has been associated with an increased risk of death following a heart attack. 

Depression can also reduce a senior’s ability to rehabilitate. Studies of nursing home patients with physical illnesses have shown that the presence of depression substantially increases the likelihood of death from those illnesses. 

While depression is more common in women, it more often increases the risk of suicide in older men. The suicide rate in people ages 80 to 84 is more than twice that of the general population. That’s why the National Institute of Mental Health considers depression in people aged 65 and older to be a major public health problem.

For this reason, it is important to make sure that seniors are evaluated and treated, even if the depression is mild.

Warning Signs of Depression in Senior Citizens

If you suspect that your loved one is suffering from depression, pay attention to these health indicators:

Irritability: Sudden mood changes can suggest depression. If a normally cheerful senior now gets easily irritated, take note.

Loss of self-regard: Experts say that one of the most obvious signs of depression in seniors is seen when they show a lack of pride in their appearance. Perhaps your mother has stopped wearing makeup, or your father has stopped bathing.

Social withdrawal: Depressed seniors tend to shut out others and avoid social situations.

Increased pain: Depression often amplifies physical pain.

Recent illness or surgery: Seniors recovering from major illness or surgery are much more likely to develop a depressive episode, and some go on to have a depression disorder. Research shows that 15 percent of people who are discharged from a hospital leave with depressive symptoms.

Recent loss: Older persons have a much higher risk than younger people of falling into depression after the loss of a loved one. It’s quite common.

Insomnia: Studies have linked depression with the inability to sleep, and insomnia is a risk factor for depression onset and recurrence – particularly in seniors.

Treatment for Depression in Senior Citizens is Available

Doctors are encouraged to screen for depression with their senior patients routinely. Using a series of standard questions, a primary care doctor can provide an effective screening for depression, allowing for better diagnosis and treatment. 

Sometimes, a combination of the following treatments may be used. Ask your loved one’s doctor more about these protocols.

There are several treatment options available for depression:

  • Medicine
  • Psychotherapy or counselling
  • Electroconvulsive therapy or other newer forms of brain stimulation (such as repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS)). 

Don’t Let Your Senior Loved One Suffer

While it’s natural to experience some grief in the face of major life changes, clinical depression doesn’t go away by itself, can last for several months, and needs to be treated by a professional.  It’s best to be a part of the solution – and because of the social stigma attached to this disorder, you’ll be doing your loved one a favour.

If you suspect your loved one is suffering from minor or major depressive symptoms, encourage him or her to seek help. Comfort Keepers® can help. Our Interactive Caregiving™ keeps our senior clients physically, mentally, and emotionally engaged while living independently at home. 

Comfort Keepers® in Edmonton Can Help with In-Home Elder Care!

If you are concerned about the health and well-being of your aging loved ones we can help with retirement care, 24-hour care, respite care, senior care, companionship care, end-of-life care, post-surgery care, palliative care, personal care, senior living transition services, and much more! 

Comfort Keepers®’ are trained caregivers who help provide senior clients with the highest quality of life possible to keep them happy and healthy at home. 

Companionship Care and Interactive Caregiving™

Our Interactive Caregiving™ provides a system of care that addresses companionship, safety, nutrition, mind, body, and activities of daily living (ADLs).

Moreover, our trained caregivers are selected with one specific quality: empathy. Empathetic care is care that starts in the heart, and it allows us to meet our client’s exact needs. 

Home Care Edmonton

To learn more about senior care in Edmonton, contact the Comfort Keepers® office to discuss our unique service offering. If you live in Devon, Edmonton, Sherwood Park, or Stony Plain and surrounding areas, contact Comfort Keepers at 780-465-4665.

Is Invoicing Modelling and Client Direct Home Care the Right Option for You?

Comfort Keepers® Edmonton is an Approved Service Provider for the Client Directed Homecare Invoicing (CDHCI) Program Offered by Alberta Health Services. Read more about the program HERE.

Comfort Keepers Edmonton is here to help you and your loved ones get the best care possible. Recently awarded the “Accredited with Exemplary Standing” seal by Accreditation Canada, our Edmonton location has achieved the highest available certification in Canada for Home Care services, clearly demonstrating Comfort Keepers’ commitment to offering safe, high-quality home care to its senior clients in Edmonton.


References:

  • National Institutes of Health (NIH) Senior Health. “Depression”. Web. 2016.
  • American Psychological Association. “Aging and Depression”. Web. 2016.
  • A Place for Mom. “Elderly Depression: Symptoms & Care”. Web. 2015.
  • WebMD. “Depression in the Elderly”. Web. 2016.
  • Mood Disorders Association of Ontario. “Frequently Asked Questions – Seniors and Depression”.  Web 2016.

Individualized Home Care Options

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