Feeling Blue Not a Normal Part of Aging

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Depression and Older People

New booklet helps seniors deal with depression

Many older Americans think that feeling depressed is just part of growing older. They believe sadness, irritability, aches and pains, and feelings of hopelessness just come with age. However, these feelings are not a normal part of aging. In fact, such symptoms can be a sign of depression, a serious medical illness affecting more and more seniors every year.

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Growing older usually brings lifestyle changes that may contribute to feelings of sadness or grief. Changes such as the loss of a spouse, illness, moving to assisted living facilities, death of friends or family or children moving away can cause such feelings. But when those feelings last for weeks or inhibit your daily activities it may be a sign of something more serious that requires a doctor's care.

In recognition of Older Adult Mental Health Awareness Week May 22-28, the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA) is encouraging older adults to pay attention to their feelings that may be symptoms of depression so they are offering a free booklet called, "Coping with Mood Changes Later in Life." The booklet covers topics such as the difference between grief and depression; what to expect from treatment and how to reduce the cost of treatment.

It is so important to get the treatment you need.

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