Depression is something that affects a huge number of seniors. Estimates are that more than six million seniors have depression but only 10% will ever get treatment. Now is a good time for the family caregivers of seniors to learn more about how depression can impact their loved ones. Winter months can make the symptoms of depression even worse for seniors because of the cold weather, the lack of sunlight, and the need for seniors to be inside all of the time. If your senior loved one has depression there are some things that you and their personal care at home aides can do to help.
Get Personal Care At Home Services
A personal care at home provider can help your senior loved one with household tasks that are too much for them to manage. Personal care at home providers help with things like laundry, cleaning, cooking, and medication management. But more than that they provide the kind of social connection and company that seniors need. When your senior loved one is spending one on one time with a caring friend and helper on a regular basis they are less likely to struggled with the symptoms of depression.
Get Natural Light Light Bulbs
The lack of sunlight and natural light in the winter can be a trigger for some of the symptoms of depression. If you replace the bulbs in your senior loved one’s lamps with light bulbs that mimic natural light it will help your loved one get the benefits of natural sunlight. Natural light bulbs are just one of many items that you can get for your senior loved one to help them manage the symptoms of depression.
Get Their Medication Checked
If you notice that your senior loved one is having more frequent symptoms of depression or that their depression seems to be getting worse you may want to have a doctor check their medication. Sometimes medication side effects can trigger depression. Also some medications can cause symptoms that are similar to the symptoms of depression. It never hurts to have your senior loved one’s doctor check the medications that they take. There may be some dosages that need to be adjusted or medications that need to changed because of the interactions that they cause.
Visit As Much As You Can
Your senior loved one understands when you can’t visit all the time. Maybe you live far away, or you have work and childcare responsibilities. But try to spend as much time as you can with your senior loved one even if it’s just through a phone call or a video chat. When you check in with your senior loved ones they will feel an emotional boost from seeing your face or hearing your voice that can help their mental state. A personal care at home provider can help set up video calls or help your senior loved one answer a video call if you want to talk with your loved one on video.