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Depression and Caregiver Stress: How to Minimize the Impact When an Aging Senior Is Also Depressed

Depression and Caregiver Stress: How to Minimize the Impact When an Aging Senior Is Also Depressed

Depression and Caregiver Stress: How to Minimize the Impact When an Aging Senior Is Also Depressed

As a family caregiver, perhaps you have been overwhelmed with stress and anxiety. This can happen. In fact, it happens far more frequently than most people will readily admit. That’s because they want to be a strong support system for their aging parent or other family member, and they assume this is their responsibility, so it should be easy. However, it rarely is that simple.

Some family caregivers are dealing with depression and other mental health issues.

Depression is rampant in our country. There are plenty of reasons for this and numerous theories as to why, but the underlying factor is that many of today’s estimated 44 million family caregivers (Forbes) are overwhelmed with many other things going on in daily life. When a family caregiver is feeling depressed and they have to support an aging parent or other family member who is also dealing with depression, everything can seem to be exacerbated.

There are steps people can take to minimize the impact.

A person dealing with depression should seek medical advice. They should never try to self-diagnose or self-medicate. If depression is chemical, due to some imbalance in the brain, there may be certain prescription medications that can help.

When providing care and support to an aging individual, whether that person is also feeling depressed, it’s important to realize one’s own limitations. If a person is pushing beyond their normal boundaries, beyond what they can do on a typical day, the stress and anxiety is only going to build and that will often exacerbate depression or depressive symptoms even more.

Home care is something to consider now.

It’s no longer time to sit around and wait, hope things get better, or assume that family caregiver will be able to deal with the situation in a better manner in a few weeks. Right now is the time to begin considering professional support services in the form of a home care aide.

Not only will the stress and anxiety continue to increase for that caregiver, but it’s going to have a negative impact on the senior as well. An experienced home care aide will understand the value of activity, exercise, and staying positive. They can give the family caregiver the time off he or she needs to cope with whatever they are dealing with. That professional caregiver will also be able to help provide better strategies to keep the senior positive and encouraged when things seem darkest.

If you or an aging loved one are considering caregivers in Spring Branch, TX, please call the caring staff at At Your Side Home Care. We will answer all of your senior care questions. Call today: (832) 271-1600.

Donna Wrabel, LMSW

For most of us, the word "home" evokes warm feelings of comfort, security and well-being. For older adults, home also means holding tight to cherished memories and maintaining self-esteem and independence. When illness, injury or age make life a little more challenging, remaining at home in a comfortable, familiar environment encourages recovery and enhances the quality of life. Home can be defined as a private residence, an independent or assisted living facility or even a short term stay in the hospital, we recognize the additional benefits provided by a personal, professional assistant.

Our Certified Nurse Aides, 24-Hour Live-in Assistants and Home Health Aides are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. We also provide the security and confidence of 24-hour Telephone Assistance, so fast, reliable help is always available when it's needed. To learn more about our homecare services see our homecare services page.

Different people need different levels of homecare. To meet the requirements of our clients, At Your Side Homecare maintains consistent staffing levels of caring professionals. Homecare service is available for as little as a few hours a week, or as many as 24 hours a day, seven days a week