Having spent several years of my career working with elders, I know that depression, while not a necessary part of aging, is a “normal” experience of human beings, and, it is on the rise in older adults.
I also know that when depression does come around, that it can most often be relieved.
There are a host of causes of depression in people who are older: from loss of role identity as a spouse, parent, or worker to loss of family and loved ones, to loss of physical abilities, to financial insecurity, to a search for meaning and new purpose.
That can be a lot of loss to deal with on one’s own.
But depression can be helped so we can enjoy the many benefits of being older: sharing our wisdom, spending our time in meaningful ways, doing things we didn’t have time for, valuing mindful contemplation, staying fit and strong as we are able, enjoying generations…, and so much more.
We needn’t let occasional and temporary depression become entrenched and spiral downward. Help and assistance is available.
Reach out to your primary care doctor, your loving network, your Area Agency on Aging, your religious leaders, and connect with age savvy counselors and services.
While depression does not necessarily have to be a part of aging, it is “normal” to feel depressed sometimes, in any stage of life. It is also “normal” to reach out for some assistance to help to move through difficult times, and make adjustments to this developmental stage of life, so you can enjoy more of the gift of living – yes, at this age.
For more information on this issue check out this link to a very good article at NextAvenue.org
[You can reach out to the National Suicide Hot Line 24 hours a day – 1 800-273-8255]