We all hope our family members will enjoy “the golden years.” But, as individuals age, they experience the loss of loved ones, and the stresses that go with losing physical and mental abilities. A changing lifestyle and increased physical challenges can lead to sadness and withdrawal. However, persistent personality changes or unusual behavior may indicate your loved one is suffering from an emotional illness, such as depression.
Signs and symptoms that a loved one may be experiencing an emotional illness include:
- Sleep or eating disturbances
- Crying spells
- Excessive and uncontrolled anger
- Disregard for personal appearance
- Sad or blank looks
- Thoughts of suicide
- Forgetfulness or confusion
- Social isolation
- Severe agitation or mood swings.
These symptoms are not normal at any age and should be considered an illness in the elderly.
Personal, Warm, Supportive Care
Most depression and other emotional illnesses in older people are treatable, especially if dealt with early. In addition to improving a senior’s outlook on life, therapy also helps individuals care for themselves better and follow their primary care provider’s directions, particularly about taking medicines.
The Geriatric Behavioral Health Program at Methodist Hospitals is here to let you know that you are not alone in caring for your elderly parent or loved one. We help individuals understand what’s going on and determine the best course of care.
How We Can Help
Methodist Hospitals Behavioral Health offers individualized care in a warm, supportive atmosphere. The first thing our professional team will do is a very thorough evaluation to help determine what’s causing the behavioral and mental changes. We also check for any underlying medical issues that may contribute to behavioral changes. We will then work with the patient, family and other health professionals to develop a course of treatment that best meet the individual’s needs. Treatment includes individual meetings with psychiatrists and/or group therapy to assist with emotional, mental, physical, and medication needs. Our nurses, psychiatrists, trained counselors and social workers can help with all aspects of a person’s life.
Our Special Services
To ensure excellent access and care, we offer:
- Free confidential initial consultation to help determine the appropriate level of care.
- Assistance locating the least restrictive environment that can assist meeting individual needs.
- Management of a patient’s secondary medical needs.
- A history of satisfied patients and families.
You Are Not Alone
- Depression and other emotional illnesses are a significant problem for older adults.
- National statistics show that one out of four older adults suffers from serious emotional difficulties related to aging.
- Depressed older adults have the highest risk of suicide in our society.
- Nineteen million people will suffer from depression at one time in their lives. Of these, eighty to ninety percent can be effectively treated.
Behavioral Health Services
600 Grant Street, Gary, IN 46402 • 219-886-4755