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7 Symptoms of Mental Illness in Old People
21 Jan 2020
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As our loved ones age, it is obviously natural, that there would be changes in their behavior.

Regular forgetfulness is one thing, however; persistent cognitive or memory loss is another thing and need supervision.

Signs of mental illness may be expressed verbally in discussion. Often, the elderly exhibit their symptoms behaviorally or physically instead.

These are the 7 symptoms in the elderly to spot mental illness during their aging process.

1. UNUSUAL AVOIDANCES

For seniors, avoiding extreme weather conditions or exhausting activities makes sense. However, avoiding eye contact, using the bathroom, touching certain objects, or participating in events is not normal. Remain alert on exhibits of extreme or unusual avoidances

2. DIFFICULTY IN MAKING BASIC DECISIONS

Memory, emotions, and process of judgment affect decision-making. Sometimes seniors struggle to make basic decisions, or change their minds frequently. This issue may be caused by mental illness. When a senior citizen has trouble making a decision, and seems to be seeking the choice with the least risk, many may suggest there is some dementia involved. Not so, finds a new study – people are just less able to make decisions as they age.

If things keep getting worse, they may need to get on medications for mental issues like Alzhiemer's

3. UNEXPLAINED STOMACH DISTRESS

A person’s gut reveals a lot about their physiological state. If a senior has unexplained digestive problems, they might be experiencing feelings due to mental illness that are causing distress. Change in bowel habits, are caused by multiple reasons. Some of them may be medications, inactivity, not drinking enough fluids, gastro –intestinal growths are some of the few reasons

4. AGITATION OR WHIMSICAL ATTITUDE

Irritability among the aged may occur because of physical conditions like chronic pain. However, agitation and moodiness without reasonable cause can indicate a mental health problem

5. CHANGE IN APPETITE, SLEEPING PATTERNS

Often a change in eating or sleeping habits is the first sign of depression. Attention to a senior’s routine needs to be paid. Questions need to be asked as to why their habits may otherwise be changing. Often the most effective approach to improving sleeplessness is to ensure proper sleep "hygiene”. This refers to "all the daily practices or routines that can either promote or impede nighttime rest." Some activities that help induce sleep are sticking to a regular bedtime, having pre-sleep rituals such as bathing, a light snack, or reading, exercising regularly but not within four hours of bedtime. Caffeine must be refrained from, within six hours of bedtime, avoiding smoking close to bedtime, taking a midafternoon nap, and avoiding alcohol and sleeping pills.

6.  DISINTEREST, FATIGUE

Feeling tired can occur because of aging. When tiredness becomes a constant or chronic fatigue, it may be a sign to attend. Be alert of a disinterest in hobbies or decrease in socialization due to fatigue. Lack of energy has been linked to poorer reported health and physical function, such as being able to walk fewer blocks before needing to rest and more limited ability to perform activities of daily living.

7. HALLUCINATIONS OR DELUSIONS

If senior recalls information that does not make sense or that ever occurred they may be undergoing hallucinations or delusions. These symptoms may be present as paranoia or as simple confusion

No matter how intimidating the scenarios might seem for the golden aged, there is definitely hope, support and best of health waiting in time. Engaging seniors to pastime work, like consultant, subject matter expert, writer, greeter, childcare giver etc are one way to give them back their confidence, hope that will automatically ease the burden of low self-esteem from their mind. Clubs for elderly meet up, culture exchange between new generation and old, will bring that spring in their step, which would enable them to pass their last years in feather touch.

Tags
Alzhiemer's Depression Elders MentalHealth
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