Complaints of elderly people suffering from depressive spectrum disorder often revolve around problems with diseases of internal organs, joints, and spine. It is worth paying special attention to the fact that it is very, very difficult to identify depression in old age . In general, it does not belong to the typical “companions” of old age and is not an inevitable consequence of age-related changes.
In general , if depression manifests itself, then with age , somatic, that is, bodily symptoms , hypochondriacal experiences (excessive attention to one’s health, constant fear of getting sick), fears , anxiety , irritable, maliciously melancholy mood, cognitive impairments come to the fore … In this period of life vividly expressed – wife are manifestations of depression as a negative image of will – present, the difficulty of perception of positive developments. The cause of all failures, including growing physical difficulties, people begin to consider their own failure. In the case of depressive illness in the foreground you can go delusions of guilt and sin.
Fears that with age it becomes more difficult to treat depression , which is largely justified and is due to the influence of the vascular factor, on the one hand, and degenerative changes in the cerebral cortex , on the other. Studies show that the effectiveness of treatment for depression, as well as its manifestations, in old and senile , and at a young age is approximately the same. Another thing is that among the mechanisms of the onset of depression, over time, deep, biological factors begin to play an increasing role . This organic changes in the brain and the aging of the cardiovascular system, other related chronic – skie internal diseases, metabolic disorders. Drug treatments can go on the forefront, but there is often need a combination of two antidepressants of different mecha – ma action, active involvement of non-drug therapies .
The influence on depression of psychosocial factors , which also contribute to its occurrence and development, cannot be underestimated .
Among the most common reasons that provoke the onset of depression , – fear of loss of autonomy, lack of social support, loneliness, social isolation, loss of influence and respect, changing living conditions and the usual social ties.
Especially dangerous in old age are severe mental trauma – the death of a spouse, a change of place of residence (moving to another district, city, country, from a rural area to a city, etc.), and finally, financial collapse, so familiar to most Russian pensioners. That is why in the psychotherapy of the elderly and senile age the support and encouragement of a person is so important – and especially in the family circle, if , fortunately, there is one.