The problem with today’s world is that they ignore and overlook the issues of mental health for senior citizens. Elderly’s deal with depression, anxiety, and mental stress which makes their living life quality worse than ever. Luckily, the caregivers and the loved ones can take a few actions to make sure that the health of their elderly is good and they are doing completely fine.
Senior citizens, aging 60 or above make needful contributions to society as volunteers, family members, and active members in the workplace. While most senior citizens have good mental and physical health, others are at high risk of developing neurological disorders, mental disorders, or substance use issues as well as other health conditions such as hearing loss, diabetes, and osteoarthritis. On top of that when people age, they are more likely to develop several health conditions at the same time.
- Globally the population of senior citizens is increasing rapidly. Between the years 2015 and 2050, the percentage of the world’s population of elderly over 60 years of age will nearly double from 12% to 22%.
- Well-being and mental health for senior citizens is the most important than for any age.
- Neurological disorders and well-being among senior citizens account for 6.6% of the total disability for this age group. (DALYs)
- Approximately 15% of adults aged 60 and above suffer from mental disorders.
Risk factors for mental health issues among senior citizens
There can be various risk factors for issues related to mental health for senior citizens at any point in life. Senior Citizens may experience life stress just like common people but also the stress that is more common in old age as a specific ongoing loss in their functional abilities and a decline in their capacities. For instance, senior citizens may experience diminished mobility, frailty, chronic pain, or other senior citizens’ health issues for which they need some form of long-term supervision. In addition, elderly people are more likely to experience events such as a downfall in socioeconomic status or bereavement with retirement. All of these mental health issues can result in loneliness, isolation, or psychological distress in senior citizens for which they may need long-term care.
Mental health for seniors has a powerful impact on physical health and vice-versa. For instance, elderly people with bad physical health conditions such as heart disease have higher rates of anxiety than the elderly who are healthy. In addition to this, untreated anxiety in a senior citizen with heart disease can negatively affect its consequence.
Senior citizens are also exposed to elder abuse including verbal, physical, financial, psychological, and sexual abuse, negligence, abandonment, and serious losses of respect and dignity. Current research suggests that 1 in 6 senior citizens health experience elder abuse. Senior citizens’ abuse can lead not only to mental but physical injuries too. Sometimes it can also be serious and sometimes even long-lasting psychological upshots including anxiety and depression.
Care strategies and treatment to address senior citizens’ health and the need of older people
- It is important to draw up the societies and health providers to meet the particular needs of older citizens, including:
- Instruction for health experts in offering care to the mental health for senior citizens
- Managing and preventing age-associated chronic diseases including neurological, mental, and substance use disorders.
- Building sustainable policies on palliative care and long-term
- Building age-friendly settings and services
How to help
There are a few ways to identify these early signs in senior citizens’ health and aid them to get their happy, healthy life back
It is very important for the elderly to connect with others as soon as possible, Silver Talkies stated. Isolation can only stimulate sadness and loneliness which can be deleterious to mental health. Friends and family should try to keep in touch with these elderly people via phone, email or maybe visit them whenever possible. Senior citizens should also have the chance to interact with other people in their neighborhood or accommodate living in a community. If your loved ones seem lonely, inspire them to sign up for a class, pick a new hobby that makes them happy or try a new workout so that they can not only stay happy but also can interact with others. If your loved one is in a sorrowful zone or recently detected with a medical condition, there may be support groups in your area that they should attend. Friendship and social interaction can build good mental health for seniors.