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Depressions at advanced age
During the European researches it was revealed that prevalence of a depression at people of advanced age approximately makes 12%. And women make 14% of this quantity, and the man of 9%. According to the statistics World Health Organization of 40-45% of patients of advanced age who saw a doctor with various diseases have pronounced symptoms of a depression at advanced age.
The depression reasons at advanced age
The main reason of development of a depression is rejection of a situation of own aging. Due to the general aging of an organism physical feebleness, difficulty in self-service constantly increases. Because with age there is an easing of sight and hearing there are difficulties in communication with other people, the person becomes lonely, remains in private with the problems and thoughts. In addition to above listed, the old age still is a baggage not only acquisitions, but also a large number of losses. It can be losses in connection with death of the loved one, or a serious illness of the spouse, separation from children, retirement, deprivation of work, loss of a certain social status.
From everything told it is possible to allocate certain factors in bonds with which there is a depression at advanced age. These factors are:
- the loneliness, is aggravated if there is a loss of the loved one;
- shortcoming or shortage of social support;
- existence of stressful situations in life.
- uncontrolled reception of some medicines or their combination;
- outer physiological defects, such as: amputation of any extremity, operation on an oncotomy or a stroke with visible effects);
- genetic predisposition to a depression;
- fear of death;
- the increased uneasiness;
- life in a privacy, partial or full isolation from society;
- various diseases;
- suicide bents in the past;
- severe pain of chronic character;
- depression attacks in the past;
- recent loss of close people;
- alcoholism or abuse of narcotic substances.
When scanning a brain of elderly people who are sick with depressive frustration a quantity of dark stains is visible. It speaks about deterioration in blood circulation, blood to these a brain site just does not reach. Thereof there are chemical changes which increase chances of emergence of a depression irrespective of, there are in life stresses or not.
Depression symptoms at advanced age and its development.
Development of a depression happens not at once, rather slowly. At first appears and gradually the general depression connected with the unreasonable and exaggerated fears for the health develops. The person feels the increased concern for close people, their state, material welfare. The elderly person thoughts resides in the past, regrets for the missed opportunities. He thinks of the insolvency and that at present it is necessary to nobody to life. The consciousness of the elderly person is absorbed by internal work of an organism, he thinks that it has the most dreadful disease in the world, and nobody trusts it. All world around becomes for it insignificant, practically everything ceases to interest it.
Depression symptoms at advanced age are shown when the person ceases to read absolutely, sits down on series or TV programs of a talk-show in which difficult stories from life causing sympathy are told. The person equates himself to heroes of such programs. If someone tries to show interest in such person, to support him or to calm, then for it it seems insincere, silly, empty. Enough often such attempts give a converse effect.
The person does not notice the depression, his mood usual and natural seems to it. All offers on providing psychological the help are rejected as however, also reception of antidepressants is rejected. Relatives of the elderly person are often surprised that such condition of the person close to them is regarded as depressive frustration. As a result of such relation patients cannot receive necessary treatment, they try to cope independently with the illness though it will easily respond to medical treatment.
The depression at advanced age quite often lasts much longer, than at more young people. It considerably increases chances to get heart attack, and even fast death, from a chronic disease. Depressions at advanced age reduce possibilities of the person on rehabilitation.
According to the statistics, all elderly people who need professional medical care, at presence of a depression, potential suicide bombers. Especially mortality among the patients who had myocardial infarctions increases. Therefore for close people and relatives it is important to provide the sick person with full effective treatment.
The depression at advanced age proceeds against alarm and melancholy. Their experiences are filled with uncertain gloomy presentiments, nervousness, expectation of all misfortunes. Uneasiness level constantly increases. Depression symptoms at advanced age are especially strongly shown in the evening or it is usually negative experiences at night. The people having a depression lament, grumble, keep saying something, groan and sometimes sob.
They perplexed look around and absurdly wander about the room, constantly rearranging some things, or occupying itself with something. The alarming and sad state finds a combination to the slowed-down, pulling speech, slackness and low-mobility. Sometimes the person as though fades on site, falling into an autistic state, he notices nobody and does not hear.
Complications of a depression at advanced age
The depression among men quite often leads to suicide attempts. Often suicides happen at the age of 80-84. According to National institute of health, a depression at advanced age is one of the most serious diseases which is widespread in modern society.
At a depression of people loses a dream, at this time the dream becomes discontinuous. In the mornings there comes early awakening in combination with feeling sick. Despite the existing myth about duration of a dream of elderly people. People have to sleep as much how many slept at young age, and even it is more. Today, sleeplessness is one of depression symptoms. Sleeplessness can become an origin and repeated emergence of complication of a depression at advanced age.
Quite often at a late depression people complain of bad memory, loss of concentration of attention, a disorientation. But these disturbances are not a weak-mindedness indicator. They have reversible character. The elderly person for hundred percent is confident in hopelessness of the situation. He thinks that such state will infinitely last long that his life is invariable, it was never better, and it will never become better. In human life with a depression there is no pleasure in life, nothing gives pleasures. For such people it is typical to complain of feeling of emptiness in soul and life, on uselessness of past life and today. They spend the most part of days to beds, are interested in nothing, the events around for them are indifferent, sometimes fall and cease to watch personal hygiene. Such patients often say that they torment the family that it will only become better for all if it does not become.
Treatment of a depression of advanced age
In medicine and psychology there are several methods of treatment of a depression at people of advanced age. This and drug treatment, both psychotherapy sessions, and electroshock therapy. If the course of a depression occurs in a severe form, then the combination and merge of all methods of treatment is pertinent. As means for relief of symptoms is used by drugs against sleeplessness. For treatment of sleeplessness there are latest hypnagogues which are safe for people of advanced age. If these drugs did not lead to necessary result, the psychologist can recommend a concomitant use of sedative drugs with visit of psychotherapy.
As a rule, antidepressants help to facilitate depression symptoms at advanced age. The majority of antidepressants yield a positive take at treatment of a depression. But at purpose of these drugs, it is necessary to remember that there are side effects and incompatibility with other medicamentous drugs. At mature age antidepressants begin to work much later.
Psychotherapy at a depression. A large number of patients is confirmed that active support of relatives and friends, participation in a self-care, visit of support groups, psychotherapy sessions, yield good result. The psychotherapy method is most effective when the person refuses reception of medicamentous drugs.
Method of an electroshock therapy. This method plays not the last role in medicine and treatment of a depression at advanced age to it confirmation. When having a depression, cannot accept medicines owing to their rejection, therapy by an electroshock can become the alternative method of treatment bringing effective result. The main thing in treatment of a depression is a timely diagnosis of a condition of the person and the choice of effective methods.
Section: Mental, depressive disorders