Depression in the elderly be dangerous to underestimate

Depression in the elderly are often not recognized and incorrectly treated. This contributed to the significantly increased suicide rates of the elderly, said the Foundation German depression aid.

A survey of more than 5300 citizens shows, therefore, large gaps in knowledge on the subject. So think more than one in five (22 percent), in the treatment of physical diseases is more important.

“In seniors, Depression is still more common than in younger people overlooked,” said Ulrich Hegerl, President and CEO of the Foundation German depression aid. “Depressive symptoms such as hopelessness and lack of pleasure, sleep disorders or feelings of Exhaustion are often seen as the expression of a stand-alone serious illness, but as an understandable response to the Bitterness of old age or as a result of physical diseases, misinterpreted.”

Basically, an old-age depression is no different from a disease in the younger years, but there are some peculiarities. In Depression people tend to have problems as more and more of them. While in younger Affected, among other things, professional problems are in the foreground, it is common in the elderly health problems. So back pain, or ringing in the ears in the case of a Depression, for example, as the increasingly unbearable felt.

The main reasons for this: a Lot more than just Stress at work

That depression will be underestimated in the age also stems from the fact that the vast majority of the German Stress and strain in the workplace is one of the main causes of Depression. Therefore, the disease is not often associated with the elderly in the connection. Not even half of the respondents (45 percent) knew that Depression is also a disease of the brain.

“Depression depends on a lot of less of the current life circumstances, as many believe,” said Hegerl. “It is a distinct disease that can affect anyone – even the elderly.”

Such errors result in deficits to large Treatment. So 86 percent of the Germans believe that an elderly person is finding it hard to seek help. This is especially true for psychotherapy.

  • In fact, twelve percent of the more than 70-Year-olds in psychotherapeutic treatment just once,
  • in the case of the ill respondents between 30 and 69 years, this is almost a third (31 per cent).

With a lack of openness to psychotherapy these differences can not explain: According to the survey, almost two-thirds (64 percent) would be willing for the Older to take a psychotherapy. “Older people will be much offered to rare psychotherapy,” concluded Hegerl. Treatment of Depression in elderly patients just as important as in younger. Both psychotherapy as well as drug therapy can proven to help.

What relatives can do

Develop related depression, is a burden on the, often family members. Many do not know how to with the Sufferers deal with it. Experts give the following advice:

Take the disease seriously: members should depressive moods, not to trivialize. As with all serious illnesses, you should seek medical help immediately, recommends the German depression help. Because it is for people with depression is often difficult to raise a doctor’s visit, family members may help the appointment or in the practice.

Stay patient and give you any advice: listening is important. Even when depressed people complain again and again, should members be patient, stay positive, and not turn away. The German depression aid also recommends, with well-intentioned advice to hold back – for example, the tip to go away for a few days, or the advice to pull himself together. Both is counterproductive. Instead, relatives should support the initiative of the Depressive.

You can call in case of doubt, the emergency physician: Have members of the suspicion that someone is in danger, the life to take, you should address this to. The Federal centre for health education advises. No relatives should try to make their own professional help, but a doctor or psychotherapist, consult your. When a person is at immediate risk of suicide and will be in great danger, but no help to get, should members immediately call the emergency number 112.