Did you know depression in an older adult does not always look the same as in a younger person?
In some older adults, depression may:
Perhaps most importantly, an older adult does not as easily admit to the possibility of depression. If you ask them about “being depressed” it is likely to be denied.
The federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) suggests one simple way to identify the possibility of depression in an older adult: Ask two questions, preferably without using the word “depressed.”
“Yes” to both questions should lead you to seek a formal diagnosis from a well-informed health-care provider. Diagnosis by a knowledgeable clinician is an important step in the treatment process. Depression is highly treatable. Early diagnosis means greater likelihood of good treatment outcome.
Seek treatment — the earlier the better.
For additional information, visit the Mastery of Aging Well learning lesson Depression in Later Life.
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