Nursing facilities are nowadays much better than they used to be. According to an experienced Illinois nursing home abuse lawyer, the number of abuses reported in regards to seniors in nursing homes is going down. While this is definitely encouraging, when referring to the depression caused by moving to a nursing home, things are always the same.
Due to various different facts, like losing independence and moving to a new home after a very long time of living in the current one, seniors can end up faced with depression. The level of depression felt can easily range from chronic to just mild. Unfortunately, there are not many elders that will admit to this. That is why the situation is a really hard one to deal with.
Senior Depression – Diagnosis And Treatment
Depression can appear due to a psychological or biological cause. Identifying which one is the reality is very important. Therapy, medication and a combination of both will always help if symptoms are displayed. A much more effective treatment can appear when the cause is identified.
When depression is just mild and is caused by factors from the psychological realm, like a lack of stimulation and socialization, going to a therapist helps much more than initially imagined.
When dealing with depression, medication is definitely useful. However, nonpharmaceutical treatments can work with the prescription drugs. When the senior is fully open for conversations, something as simple as talk therapy can help. It does help a lot to go through the associated fears and concerns.
Therapists recommend that family members are involved since this can be really helpful. Many seniors actually do not come in if the family is not involved. Remember that the best role of the family is that of an observer. Traditional family therapy is different than what is needed to help the seniors.
What Should Be Done?
If you want to help a senior that is affected by depression, important things to consider include:
- Encouraging social interaction – It is always very important to be around those that have similar life experiences and interests. This in itself is therapy.
- A new hobby – After going to a nursing home, there will be a lot more free time that the senior needs to fill. This is where a hobby can easily step in to help.
- Open talks – In many cases, seniors just want to talk about everything that they feel. This is a huge moment in life so be sure that you do not shut the senior out.
- Enhance the living environment – The nursing home room needs to feel as true home. This is much easier said than done. However, you can always enhance everything by adding as many personal touches as possible.
- Exercising should be encouraged – Sometimes, something as simple as mild physical activity helps deal with depression more than most other things. As a simple example, mild walking can be enough for most seniors.
On the whole, one of the most important things that you have to do with seniors going to nursing home is make them feel loved.
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