How Has Depression Increased In Older Adults Since Covid-19 and How Can We Make A Positive Impact On Their Lives?

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“You may think your light is small, but it can make a big difference in other peoples lives. Let you light shine”


What is Depression?

Depression is classified as a mood disorder. It may be described as feelings of sadness, loss, or anger that interferes with a person’s everyday activities.

Types of Depression:

  • 1. Major depressive disorder: More severe form of depression. It is characterized by persistent feelings of sadness, hopelessness and worthlessness that don’t go away. In order to be diagnosed with clinical depression you much experience 5 or more of the following symptoms over a two week period:
  • Feeling depressed most of the day, loss of interest in regular activities, significant weight loss, sleeping a lot or not sleeping at all, low energy, recurring thoughts of death or suicide ex.
  • 2. Persistent depressive disorder: Used to be called dysthymia. It is a milder, but chronic form of depression. In order to diagnosis, symptoms must last for 2 years. PDD can affect someone’s life more that major depression because it lasts for a longer period. Common symptoms include:
  • loss interest in normal daily activities, feel hopeless, lack productivity and have low self-esteem

Treatments for Depression:

  • Medications
  • Psychotherapy
  • Light Therapy
  • Alternative therapies(acupuncture, herbal supplements and fish oil)
  • Exercise
  • Avoid Alcohol and Drugs
  • Learn How to Say No
  • Take Care Of Yourself

Ways you can put a smile on older adults faces:                     
                                                                                            

 

What ways do you think will make an impact on older adults lives and what will you do today that will put a smile on someone’s face? 

 

Here are some ideas:

  1. Cooking and sharing a meal
  2. Playing games(card and board games)
  3. Go on a walk outside
  4. Sit down with them and share stories
  5. Teach them a new skill or have them teach you something
  6. Teach older adults how to use online social platforms so they can stay connected to friends and family
  7. Visit and spend time with them as much as you can
  8. Become pen pals with an older adult in your community

Resources: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1AM6I9ZhXptfVYyPFuOTiqQEQsoN59p8WcWkSFxMdPdQ/edit?usp=sharing

Here is a quiz to test your knowledge on Depression?

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdLMr4EG3g48lHbeq_X93dLQLxx6VCwNw2yHlw5sxllNcY2CQ/viewform?usp=sf_link

4 Comments

4 comments

  1. Hey Kathleen! I loved interacting with your presentation. It was very informative yet engaging at the same time. I never really thought about depression increasing in adults since COVID so I appreciate your presentation on it. I find it interesting how mental illness seems to be underrepresented among older adults rather than just adolescents. Nice job on your presentation!

  2. Here is my response to you question:

    Something I may do to make an impact on the older people in my life is making sure I continue to spend time being present with them, do an activity with them, and continue to express gratitude for them so they know they are appreciated.

    Good job on your project

  3. Hi Kathleen! I really enjoyed your focus on older people as I feel like that age group is not typically focused on by many. I will definitely be taking the information you presented into account moving forward as the pandemic is still going on! It would be cool to study how the vaccination and return to “normal” has affected this age group (hopefully for the better). Again loved your work!

  4. Hi Kathleen! This was an awesome project. I loved how relatable it is as we have all experienced COVID-19 and have adults in our lives that could potentially be affected by depression triggered by the pandemic. I particularly liked your visuals. They were very visually appealing and added a lot to your project! In the future, maybe you could explore how depression has increased in other age groups due to the pandemic. Maybe students?

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