Depression in the Elderly

Depression in adults is common it can affect every aspect of your life impacting on your energy levels, appetite, or sleep.

Unfortunately, all too many depressed older adults fail to recognize the symptoms of depression, or do not take steps to get the help they need.  You may assume you have a good reason to be down or depression is part of ageing. You maybe isolated which itself can lead to depression.

You may realize that your physical complaints are signs of depression.


Signs and symptoms

  • Sadness or feelings of despair.
  • Unexplained or aggravated aches and pains
  • Weight loss
  • Loss of appetite
  • Lack of motivation
  • Neglecting personal care


What causes depression in the elderly

As we grow older we may face significant changes that can increase the risk of depression. Health problems, illness, disability, chronic pain, cognitive decline, loneliness, isolation, and a dwindling social circle due to deaths, and decreased mobility are all factors which can contribute towards depression.

A lot of elderly people feel a sense of purposelessness or loss of identity due to retirement,

There are also some medical conditions, which increase the risk of depression in the elderly these are as follows:

  • Parkinson Disease
  • Heart Disease
  • Dementia/Alzheimer’s
  • Lupus
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Diabetes

Also, some medications can cause depression as follows:

Blood pressure tablets e.g. (Clonidine)

Sleeping pills

Beta blockers  e.g. ( Lopressor)

High Cholesterol medications (Lipitor)

Ulcer medications  e.g. Zantac Tagamet

Heart drugs

Steroids  e.g. Cortisone

Painkillers for arthritis

Medication for Parkinson’s



Help for depression in the elderly

There are two kinds of treatments for depression talking therapies and medication and it depends on the degree of depression. Counselling and CBT are the main talking therapies.

If you feel that you are depressed or know an older person see your GP in the first instance. A useful resource is the Age UK website See below:


claudetteClaudette is a passionate campaigner and activist for mental health stigma and domestic abuse. She believes that everyone should be treated equally regardless of their disability or gender. She has diagnoses of Bipolar Disorder, endometriosis, Chronic Fatigue and Fibromyalgia. Claudette has a certificate in Management studies.  Her interests include beauty, makeup, animal’s politics, current affairs and social networking.

You can follow Claudette on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

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