What’s ageing? It’s a natural process that often presents certain challenges to some people and their families. Even though older adults have made peace with the fact that they have to move from middle age and into their later years, some still find it hard adjusting. And that’s where the therapist comes in. The work of the specialist is to assist anyone experiencing health issues or stress while transitioning.
Medical issues of ageing
The thing about life is, it never really comes with a manual of any sort. You get to learn things as you grow older. And that could be the reason why most older adults normally find it hard differentiating signs of ageing from signs of mental or actual physical illness. Scientists have discovered the following areas will experience some mild decline:
· Hearing and vision
· Appetite and energy level
· Visuospatial abilities
· Visual and verbal memory
· Ability to name objects
· Bodily strength
With the help of a mental health specialist, being accustomed to these changes during old age should not be a problem.
Cognitive and mental health concerns
As you grow older, you’ll experience mild mental decline. But because people are genetically different, some may be affected by dementia, which can in turn lead to other issues, such as the development of conditions such as anxiety, paranoia, and depression. The most common form of dementia is Alzheimer’s, and it is said to be the cause of at least 50% of all dementia cases in the country.
If you go back to the charts, you’ll realize that 15% of adults who happen to be over the age of 60, have some sort of mental health condition. The concerns experienced by older adults include:
· Anxiety – 6% of adults suffer from this
· Sleep problems and sexual dysfunction.
· Depression – It’s usually undiagnosed and untreated and affects approximately 7% of the population.
· Behavioral concerns – verbal outbursts, wandering and motor over activity, and aggression. These are often caused by dementia, depression, and delirium.
· High suicide rates – the highest suicide rate is found in this group
· Alcohol and substance dependency
Therapy for geriatric issues
Therapy is an essential tool because it can help any older adult to manage their emotions, find new meaning in life, and even support systems. The sessions will help them deal with the grief of losing those who used to be close to them, and the fear of death. Individual or family therapy can assist the caretakers learn how to communicate with them, especially if there’s an elder who’s suffering from dementia.
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