Recognizing Depression in Seniors Sooner Can Avoid Health Problems

Professors of psychiatry at the University of Rochester Medical Center have pinpointed a number of prime factors for determining an elderly individuals risk for developing depression. The most apparent factors that contribute to depression include low-level depression symptoms, the perception of poor-quality social support, and a past history of depression.

By identifying at-risk seniors and providing preventive care, seniors and physicians can prevent psychological suffering and also avoid the negative effects of depression on other health conditions, they suggest. The report appears in the December issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry.

Depression among the elderly has been linked to a doubling in the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, as well as a worsening of chronic conditions.