Sunday, March 01, 2009

Health Tips for March 1

Health Tip: Depression in Seniors

Depression isn't a normal part of aging. But it is common in people older than age 65, and symptoms of depression can be different for seniors than for younger people.

The American Academy of Family Physicians lists these common symptoms of depression in seniors:

  • Losing interest in activities that were once enjoyed.
  • Feelings of sadness, numbness, worthlessness or guilt.
  • Suddenly crying for no reason, or crying frequently.
  • Feeling tired, slow, restless or irritable.
  • A sudden change in appetite, or unexplained change in weight.
  • Changes in sleep patterns, including sleeping too much or difficulty sleeping.
  • Difficulty remembering or concentrating, and making decisions.
  • Having frequent headaches, back pain or digestive problems.
  • Thoughts about death or suicide.

Health Tip: Signs of Depression

About 15 of every 100 adults suffer from depression, according to AARP.

Depression is more than just a case of the blues. AARP offers this list of common warning signs:

  • Difficulty concentrating, problems with memory, and difficulty making decisions.
  • Becoming irritable, angry, worried, agitated, anxious, pessimistic, or indifferent.
  • Over an extended period, being sad or unexplained bouts of crying.
  • Changes in sleep habits, as well as appetite.
  • Loss of interest in activities you once enjoyed.
  • Feelings of hopelessness.
  • Unexplained aches and pains.

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