Did you know that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate that there are seven million American adults over the age of 65 who experience depression yearly? Unfortunately, depression can be a common but serious issue among those in their golden years. Therefore, it is crucial for you to be aware of what causes depression in your loved ones. After all, only by knowing the causes of depression can you prevent the onset of depression. Here are three causes of depression in your loved ones you should be aware of.
Weak Physical Condition
Although depression is a mental health condition, it can in fact be caused by weak physical body conditions. In fact, poor physical conditions can indirectly or directly cause depression. For instance, weak physical conditions like cancer or vitamin deficiencies can affect your loved one’s body in such a way that it causes depression. Such conditions can also alter the way your loved one’s body functions and so, further induce depression. At the same time, such poor physical illness can also make it difficult for your loved one to handle on their own. For example, arthritis and impaired mobility impair your loved ones physically, and so they have no choice but to ask others for assistance.
Unfortunately, this will result in them feeling like they have lost their independence and dignity, which can result in depression. In addition, the medicine that they take to aid their poor physical health can also contribute to depression. For instance, steroids, pain medicines, and blood pressure medicines are some of the many types of medicine that may cause side effects of depression.
Isolation from Others
If your loved ones are isolated from others, your warning bells should be ringing. This is because being isolated from others can, unfortunately, cause depression. As people get older, they may become more separated from their friends, family, and communities. This might be because of the death of friends and peers, or because they are finding it more difficult to go around to see others. This issue is further worsened by the Covid-19 pandemic. The Covid-19 pandemic has disrupted many people’s lives, especially those who have been separated from friends and family for a long period, increasing their risk of depression. If this is the case for your loved ones, you need to be wary and reach out to them.
This is another common cause of depression among those in their golden years – age-related losses. After all, as people become older, they tend to go through profound moments of loss. This might include the death of close friends or acquaintances. At the same time, such age-related losses can also include the loss of their health, pets, or perhaps even, the house that they hold dear to heart. Although some people can manage well with these trying conditions, the continuous loss can lead to despair and eventually, depression. And in most cases, those in their golden years will feel like it is a continuous loss since they have lived on longer than other people, so they would have experienced more losses in their life. In addition, such age-related losses can even cause your loved ones to develop a reduced sense of purpose which can further cause a higher risk of depression.