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Can Dementia and Depression Exist at the Same Time?

Can Dementia and Depression Exist at the Same Time?

Dementia is complicated enough, but your senior might be experiencing depression at the same time. This can be difficult to help her to manage, especially if her dementia has progressed to the point that she’s unable to communicate to you what’s wrong. There may be more that you can do for her than you thought possible, however.

People with Dementia Can Absolutely Be Depressed, Too

Depression can have a variety of different causes, and just because your senior has dementia that doesn’t mean that she can’t experience other issues as well. Anxiety can be a big part of dementia, because of the changes your elderly family member is experiencing. The same is true for depression. Your elderly family member has experienced a lot of loss through her experience with dementia and that can absolutely contribute.

It’s Harder to Spot

Depression can be difficult to spot at times on its own. When someone has dementia, though, depression can be even more difficult to spot. Depression can “hide” in the other symptoms of dementia and your elderly family member may not be able to openly communicate with you how she’s feeling. Watch for signs like withdrawing even more from people and from favorite activities. Other signs could include greater irritability than usual, excess fatigue, and unexplained crying.

Talk with Your Senior’s Doctor

Any time that you’re noticing changes in your senior’s typical behavior, it’s a good idea to talk to her doctor. There may be nothing unusual going on, but it could be something. Her doctor can rule out possible medical causes, including side effects from any medications that your senior is taking. From there, you can branch out to find other possible solutions.

Look for Other Ways to Help Ease Her Depression

Your senior’s doctor may recommend medication or other treatments, but there are other things you can do to help to ease her depression. Keeping her active and engaged in daily life can help, as can finding activities that she enjoys and wants to do. Social engagement can also be a factor. It might be a good idea to hire elderly care providers, both to offer additional help and to serve as someone else that your family member can engage with on a regular basis.

There is no one solution for depression, especially for someone with dementia. Keep trying to find the combination that works for your elderly family member.

If you or an aging loved one is considering elderly care in Yalaha, FL, please contact the caring staff at Golden Heart Senior Care of Clermont today. 1-888-423-4046.