Suffering from a mental illness is long-term, and much more if it is a depression. Its symptoms are erratic, sometimes present, sometimes none without a set length or duration. Most patients with depression often feel bouts of worthlessness, extreme mood swings and in-explainable sorrow, loss of interest in anything or even physical pain like cramps and headaches just to name some.
Even with all these new medicines and approaches, there is no one absolute way of curing this type of illness. It is also understandable that caring for the elderly is a tedious task not all would want to venture into but someone has to do it. So how can caregivers, especially those who are just starting off, care for their elderly patients with depression?
Here are a few tips that we could offer:
The best way to cope with caring people with depression is by understanding the disease, even just the basics of it. Given that this disease is highly complex and its symptoms manifest differently from patient to patient, the best way to understand and care for your patient is knowing what the disease is all about and what makes it tick. Knowing these will help you become more compassionate and sensitive to the needs of the patient.
This disease is often accompanied by bouts of loneliness, worthlessness, sorrow and mood swings and these can be intensified if the patient feels that no one stands by them and that everyone is against them. However, things will be easier to deal with, both for the caregiver and the patient, if the latter has someone to talk to and to stand by them with consoling words whenever an episode occurs. Keep note that giving off the old tough love approach or staying for ulterior motives won’t work well in the long run.
Patients suffering from depression do not have complete control on the swing of their emotions as these are caused by a chemical imbalance in their bodies and they are quick to feel insecure about themselves especially if they feel that someone is judging them. Never be quick to judge them as this might create a rift between you and your senior which may lead to disastrous results.
Caring for the elderly is a taxing job. What’s more, if your senior is suffering from the likes of depression? Patients with depression are difficult to care because it varies from person to person and requires so much to do. You may feel pressure and taxed along the way, but you will not be able to conquer it if you don’t take care of yourself. Have ample amount of rest, eat the right kind of food and having some time off will do well to help balance out the strain and stress that the job carries along.