An estimated 20 percent of people age 55 and older experience some degree of a mental health issue. The risk for mental illness increases with age.
May is National Mental Health Awareness Month, a call to advocate for resources and acceptance for those living with mental health conditions. Depression is the most common mental health condition among America’s seniors.
Other prevalent cognitive and emotional health problems among the elderly include dementia, bipolar disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder and social phobia. More serious diagnoses such as schizophrenia and personality disorders persistently diminish the quality of life and daily functioning for seniors. Depressed seniors or those dealing with emotional concerns neglect eating well, getting regular exercise, maintaining the home and interacting socially.
Warning signs of mental illness may include the following:
• Ongoing sadness or feeling blue
• Extreme mood swings including euphoric highs
• Intense worry or fear
• Uncontrolled, compulsive actions
• Heightened irritability or anger
• Confusion or lack of concentration
• Sleep difficulties
• Trouble perceiving reality
• Withdrawal from family and friends
• Overuse of alcohol or drugs
• Suicidal thoughts
For additional information about National Mental Health Awareness Month and mental health resources, visit Mental Health America at http://www.mentalhealthamerica.net/may or MentalHealth.gov at https://www.mentalhealth.gov.
Right at Home in Home Care & Assistance provides help for all adults including those having a disability and recently discharged from the hospital.
For more information call 636-379-9955 or visit https://www.rightathome.net/stcharles