Physical conditions like stroke, hypertension, atrial fibrillation, diabetes, cancer, dementia, and chronic pain further increase the risk of depression. Additionally, these risk factors for depression are often seen in older adults: Certain medicines or combination of medicines.
Depression is often triggered by a stressful or negative life event. If you or a loved one is experiencing suicidal thoughts or tendencies, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255.
Your loved one’s mood changes could be caused by them reacting out of pain or exasperation to a medical condition that you may not even be able to see. In other cases, severe mood swings in seniors could be due to personal frustration with their changing bodies and lifestyles.
Factors that can increase an older person’s risk of developing anxiety or depression include:
Depression is not a condition that has one specific cause. It can happen for many different reasons and have many triggers. Usually, depression doesn’t work quickly or suddenly. The four major causes of depression are:
There’s no single cause of depression. It can occur for a variety of reasons and it has many different triggers. For some people, an upsetting or stressful life event, such as bereavement, divorce, illness, redundancy and job or money worries, can be the cause. Different causes can often combine to trigger depression.
Thus, “primary mania” results from bipolar disorder, whereas “secondary mania” results from pharmacological, metabolic, or neurologic causes (1, 2). Older adults are at risk for secondary mania because of increased medical comorbidities and neurological changes.
Family caregivers and elderly relatives often argue over things that are related to health, wellness, grooming, and hygiene. Often, it’s because the caregiving actions signal a loss of independence or prove that they are no longer capable. It may trigger feelings of fear concerning growing old and all that it means.
The Significance of Depression Depression, a type of mood disorder, is the most prevalent mental health problem among older adults. It is associated with distress and suffering (4). It also can lead to impairments in physical, mental, and social functioning (4).
These disorders in older people account for 17.4% of Years Lived with Disability (YLDs). The most common mental and neurological disorders in this age group are dementia and depression, which affect approximately 5% and 7% of the world’s older population, respectively.
Depression can make us physically older by speeding up the ageing process in our cells, according to a study. Lab tests showed cells looked biologically older in people who were severely depressed or who had been in the past.
Risk factors for falls in the elderly include increasing age, medication use, cognitive impairment and sensory deficits.
There’s growing evidence that several parts of the brain shrink in people with depression. Specifically, these areas lose gray matter volume (GMV). That’s tissue with a lot of brain cells. GMV loss seems to be higher in people who have regular or ongoing depression with serious symptoms.
Serotonin. You probably already know that serotonin plays a role in sleep and in depression, but this inhibitory chemical also plays a major role in many of your body’s essential functions, including appetite, arousal, and mood.