How Can Live-in Home Care Help With Senior Depression?

What is senior depression?

Senior depression is becoming increasingly common, although it is not well understood. Everyone feels a little bit sad from time to time, and this is perfectly normal, but depression in elderly people can have insidious health effects and so it needs to be diagnosed and treated as early as possible for the best outcome.

Depression in the elderly is caused by a variety of factors. Some older people struggle with the loss of their physical abilities and feel that there is nothing worth living for any longer.

Perhaps your loved one has experienced the death of their spouse and is struggling to cope alone, or close friends may have passed on or possibly moved away to be closer to their own families. An inability to drive, or loss of a partner who did all the driving in the past, or poor health, can all have an impact on an older person’s mental health.

For some older people, retirement can be a big disappointment, particularly if they face it alone. Downsizing to a smaller home can lead to feelings of isolation and loneliness, as can a loss of social activities that accompanied a working life. Money worries and fears about the future can all play a part, leading to prolonged feelings of sadness and a lack of motivation.

Signs of senior depression

You may notice that a loved one seems to have lost interest in their usual hobbies and pastimes. They may be becoming increasingly isolated and reluctant to meet up with friends and family. They may even neglect their personal hygiene, which could be a strong indicator that something isn’t right.

If you suspect that you loved one is suffering from depression, don’t assume that it will clear up on its own. You need to talk to your loved one to discover what is making them feel depressed and ensure that they see a doctor if necessary, so that they can be given appropriate treatment.

Bear in mind that the older generation does not always feel comfortable discussing emotions and feelings, so exercise restraint and don’t force them to open up if they don’t want to.

Dulcie’s Care Story

In this short video, Mary and Colin explain how Dulcie’s live-in Elder carer, Sarah, has become part of the family.

They discuss how live-in care has allowed Dulcie to stay independent in her own home, while making a new friend at the same time.

How a live-in carer can help to alleviate depression

Live-in care at home offers a wonderful way of providing companion care for your loved one. Elderly care providers, such as Elder, have recognised that live-in carers offer a viable alternative to residential care, even providing advanced dementia care in the home, for example. But your loved one doesn’t need to be suffering from health problems to reap the benefits of in-home care.

Loneliness is one of the biggest problems facing older UK residents today. Some older people spend days at a time without exchanging so much as a single word with another person. The sense of isolation can be overwhelming, leading to loss of self-esteem and poor self-image.

Simply introducing a dedicated caregiver into the home can have a profound effect on alleviating depression, and raise your loved one’s interest in life back to normal levels again.

What Does a Live-in Carer do?

A live-in caregiver can perform a host of tasks within your loved one’s home, but one of the principal advantages is supplying companion care.

At any time of the day or night, your loved one knows that there is someone reliable in the home that they can call upon to assist them, whether for a friendly chat and a cup of tea, or for assistance with household tasks, for example.

The carer will provide help wherever it is needed, from assistance with the housework, to feeding and walking pets, taking care of the laundry and preparing healthy and nutritious meals. The carer will take responsibility for arranging and facilitating medical appointments, store and dispense medications and arrange fun and interesting days out and activities.

Elder go to great lengths to ensure that both carer and care recipient are carefully matched, as shared interests and hobbies help to promote a strong and lasting friendship, which is beneficial to both parties. This means that your loved one and their carer will always have common ground to enable easy discussions and mutual trust and respect.

From day one, your loved one’s carer will ensure that your relative’s days are filled with entertainment, activities and engaging chats that promote a sense of wellbeing. They will make sure that your loved one doesn’t neglect their personal care, and will lend a compassionate ear for anything that your loved one wishes to discuss.

You should find that your loved one’s mental state improves dramatically with the presence of their caregiver in the home.

Simply having a friendly face and a helpful pair of hands around the home can make a huge difference to your loved one’s sense of wellbeing.

Call us for expert live-in care advice

Senior depression is becoming increasingly common, although it is not well understood. Everyone feels a little bit sad from time to time, and this is perfectly normal, but depression in elderly people can have insidious health effects and so it needs to be diagnosed and treated as early as possible for the best outcome.

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