Understanding Medical Problems

2 Reasons Adult Mental Health Care Is More Important Than Ever

If you have an older adult in your life that you care about, then you may tend to ask them about their physical health from time to time to determine if they need to visit a doctor or if their current physical health problems are being managed well. However, you should also get into the habit of asking them questions about their mental health and noting any mental health changes you notice on your own.

Mental health problems that may respond quickly to treatment can be all too easy for the families of seniors to overlook due to the belief that they are just quirks their loved one has developed due to old age. 

Read on to learn about three additional specific reasons that senior adult mental health care is more important than ever today. 

1. Some Mental Health Problems Worsen with Age

Most, if not all, mental health problems range in severity from mild to severe. However, psychologists have recently realized that many mental health problems, especially personality disorders, tend to worsen as a person becomes older

For this reason, an older adult who had a mild, undiagnosed personality disorder their whole lives that did not impact their quality of life much may finally need to seek proper treatment for it as it worsens due to old age. Specifically, people with paranoid, schizoid, dependent, obsessive-compulsive, narcissistic, anti-social, and several other related personality disorders tend to have symptoms that worsen over time. Thankfully, psychologists have good treatments for virtually all of these personality disorders that can help manage symptoms to improve the sufferer's quality of life. 

2. The Senior Suicide Rate is High

While many stages of life are accompanied by age-specific stressors, the life of a senior can be difficult. Many seniors suffer from chronic pain problems, such as arthritis, outliving spouses and friends, feeling isolated due to the loss of mobility options. For these reasons and much more, the suicide rate among seniors is especially high. In fact, seniors age 85 and older have the highest suicide rate in the country, and the suicide rate among seniors ages 75 to 84 is also extremely high. To help senior individuals in your life, watch for the signs of clinical depression and help them seek the mental health care they need.

If you have one or more older adults or seniors in your life that you care about, then always remember to inquire about their mental health when you visit them and watch for signs of mental health decline. For more assistance, contact services like RPS Care.