Depression in Elderly
5 Simple Life-Style Changes for a Better Life
Dr. Shahnawaz Mushtaq Bhat
1. Get an advanced degree
Depression is widely known and is seen as a common mental illness among elderly age over 65 years, also sometimes seen as a normal part of ageing. The prevalence of depression in elderly population aged over 65 is highly affected as compared to other age groups. In order to bring positive changes in elderly, here are the five lifestyle changes which one can do in order to overcome depression.
1. Increasing Physical & Mental Activity
Research indicates that physical & mental activities show the alternative way or positive effects on treating depression among elderly population.
Physical activities like exercising, running, walking, jogging, playing, doing household tasks, etc, not only promotes physical health but also benefits mental well-being of an elderly.
It acts as a distraction from negative thoughts and also helps to foster new skills.
Physical activity can have physiological effects, such as bringing about changes in the hormone levels, which results in improved in patients’ mood.
Yoga and Meditation can improve your mood, helps in strengthening muscles and brings balance to the body.
2. Finding a New Hobby or Interest
Get yourself involved in problem solving activities such as Sudoku, Crossword, Chess etc. It promotes mental wellness. Start reading books, articles, newspapers or any texts.
Try to get yourself involved in dancing/ singing/or any other recreational activity.
Start going out with your closed ones and travel to new places, learn new culture & heritage.
Volunteer at any community events or take up any leadership role at religious places.
Get involved in outdoor activities like gardening, bird-watching, picnics, nature photography, games etc.
3. Have Frequent Meets and Social Interaction with your Family and Friends
Don’t let yourself deal with depression on your own. Talk to people around you.
Encourage yourself to stay active and make friends.
Take part in group activities and outings regularly.
Attend community events, or any social gatherings happening around you.
Spend time with your family members and your children.
Get in touch (a multiple times) with your children/ close relative members over the phone if they are settled outside.
4. Getting Enough Sleep Daily
Wake up before 8 AM. Plan your day and complete your tasks. Avoid staying in bed.
Limit alcohol, caffeine intake and quit smoking.
Use your bedroom only for sleeping.
Keep the room as quiet as you can.
Don’t talk about stressful things before going to bed.
Go to bed before 11 PM and avoid using gadgets half an hour before sleep.
Make sure you are taking 7 to 8 hours of sleep everyday.
5. Eat a Well-Balanced Diet
Eating a well-balanced diet along with fiber-rich food such as fruits and vegetables are a must for seniors, so are grains and proteins.
Serve vegetables lightly cooked, minimize sugar and unhealthy fats.
Take Vitamin B (Meat, eggs, Sea food), Vitamin D (Sun exposure, cereals, Breads, Juices, and Milk), Omega 3 fatty acids (Fish, Nuts,
Seeds) and Protein Sources (Eggs, Some dairy products, leafy vegetables).
You should have 4 major meals in a day i.e. your Breakfast, Lunch, Evening Snack and Dinner. Make sure you do not skip a meal.
Bring these five quick and simple lifestyle changes in you to become a better version of yourself. Thanks for reading.
Kaleidoscope' Led by an experienced team of psychologists, Kaleidoscope, the mental wellness unit of Dr. Bakshi's Healthcare, provides a safe space for every individual to express and reflect on their feelings with comfort, without judgment, and with respect for the uniqueness of each individual. Kaleidoscope offers counselling services for all stages of a human life cycle-Child & Adolescent Care, Adult & Family Care, Senior Care and Professional Wellbeing.