Even though the holiday season is often considered to be the period of time when people are happy and satisfied, many people find winter depressing and this is especially true when it comes to the elderly. This is the time when they usually feel more lonely and isolated and they remember the times when they were younger or/and where their partner was alive.
According to some statistics, about six million Americans above the age of 60 are dealing with depression. Most of them feel that the symptoms and signs of depression are increasing during the holidays season and besides the reasons we’ve mentioned before, the shorter days and the low temperatures are affecting their feelings too. While it is true that depression during winter is not something that affects only the elderly, it is always a good idea for the family members to learn more about the signs and symptoms of depression and how they can eliminate them.
Now let’s highlight some of the symptoms which may vary from person to person:
– unusual worrying
– sleep issues
– feeling of constant sadness
– eating less or more than usual
– frequent crying
– lack of interest in almost any activity
– expressing thoughts that mention suicide and death
The fact is that many things change as we grow older, but this doesn’t mean that we should not enjoy the holidays. Our lives are changing and we should accept that fact because this should not stop us from living our life. It is not bad to remember some things from the past, but it is crucial to adjust to the reality.
Now that you know the symptoms and signs of depression, you can do some things to eliminate them and make your older relative happier and more satisfied.
First of all, try to keep the same schedule like before. If there are too many changes because of the holiday season, older people start feeling uncomfortable because they love routines. Another good idea is to encourage them to physical activity (if possible). Help them sleep better and monitor their diet because overeating is bad. Even though this is a very hectic period, you should not forget to remind them about taking medications.
Besides doing these things, you can always use the help of a professional home care agency like All Heart.