Main Issues of Elderly People with Mental Illness

The main issues that might surround the older person who is suffering from mental illness like Dementia or Alzheimer’s or other reactive condition like depression or anxiety are:

  • difficulty coping with day to day tasks
  • difficulty communicating
  • changes in mood, judgment or personality.


Difficulty coping with day to day tasks
The older person who is suffering from Dementia most likely relies on other person in order to finish certain task. They need to be reminded of the schedule for the day to do things accordingly. In early stages of this case, keeping a diary is helpful to remember appointments. But in later years, they even forget to open their diaries. This is the time the older person is brought in nursing homes. If an old person lives by himself or herself, accident may occur often. Like if he or she is cooking and suddenly the phone rings, he or she will answer the phone and in that instance forget the he or she is cooking. Chances are the food will burn up or even worse will cause fire in the household.

Difficulty communicating
The older people who are suffering from depression or anxiety have the issue of difficulty in communicating. They tend to withdraw themselves in the community and become isolated. They don’t want to talk to anybody. They want to do things by themselves alone. This isolation is not a healthy way resolving depression as interaction with others aid in such case. Communication is not only talking but also understanding. If he or she continues to keep do that, there is a big possibility that communication ability will be loss. That’s the worst that could happen. Care assistants need to be watchful on resident’s that might be suffering depression due to any reasons. Always take note of the changes and try to discuss them with other health care staff in order to help the resident; for it always their welfare that we should think and care for.

Changes in Mood, judgment or personality
This is also common in depression and other mental illness. The older person with this issue have the difficulty paying attention to what he or she is doing having trouble in making decisions.  There is also a sudden change in mood. The older person is suddenly acting sad without any reason that could explain why. Such mood swings can also be from periods of depression to periods of agitation and high energy. You can eminently observe as well that an older person who is depressed give less effort into personal grooming and bathing.

by: lencilicious (also known as real lady)
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About lencilicious

aims to share news, updates, information, ideas and experiences about pharmacy practice, health and fitness, entertainment and lifestyle, education, business, and more random thoughts.
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