Geropsychiatric Issues

What are geropsychiatric issues?

Geropsychiatric issues are mental illnesses that affect the elderly. More than a fifth of senior citizens in America suffer from psychiatric illnesses, including depression, dementia and anxiety disorders.

Causes of geropsychiatric issues

The causes of mental illness are uncertain. Physicians trace many types of mental illness to imbalances in brain chemistry, heredity or traumatic life events, although depression, anxiety, and personality disorders can emerge with no triggers.

Symptoms of geropsychiatric issues

Signs of mental illness in the elderly can vary, depending on the specific illness.

These are the most common symptoms of depression:

  • Lasting sad, anxious, or “empty” mood
  • Loss of interest in almost all activities
  • Appetite and weight changes
  • Changes in sleep patterns, such as inability to sleep or sleeping too much
  • Slowing of physical activity, speech, and thinking OR agitation, increased restlessness, and irritability
  • Decreased energy, feeling tired or "slowed down" almost every day
  • Ongoing feelings of worthlessness and/or feelings of undue guilt
  • Trouble concentrating or making decisions
  • Recurring thoughts of death or suicide, wishing to die, or attempting suicide (Note: This needs emergency treatment )

If you’re dealing with bipolar disorder, you may experience depressive symptoms, as well as symptoms of mania:

  • Inflated self-esteem
  • Need for less rest and sleep
  • Easily distracted or irritable
  • Racing thoughts
  • Physical agitation
  • Risky, aggressive, or destructive behavior
  • Talking a lot and talking fast
  • Excessive "high" or euphoric feelings (feeling overly happy)
  • Increased sex drive
  • Increased energy
  • Unusual poor judgment (for instance, buying sprees or sexual indiscretion)
  • Increased denial


Treatment of geropsychiatric issues

There are no cures for geropsychiatric issues, but treatment can help manage your illness. That treatment may include:

  • Medication: Many different drugs are available for bipolar. But, it often takes 4 to 6 weeks for antidepressants to have a full effect. So, it’s important to keep taking the medicine, even if it doesn’t seem to be working at first. It’s also important to talk to the doctor before stopping. Some people have to switch medicines or add medicines to get results.
  • Therapy: This is most often cognitive-behavioral or interpersonal therapy. It focuses on changing the distorted views you have of yourself and your environment. It works to improve your interpersonal relationship skills. It also helps you identify stressors and learn how to manage them.

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Treatments for Geropsychiatric Issues

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Symptoms and Screenings for Geropsychiatric Issues

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Causes and Preventions for Geropsychiatric Issues

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Education and Resources for Geropsychiatric Issues

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Support groups for Geropsychiatric Issues

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Learn More about Geropsychiatric Issues

Vidant Health can connect you to health care professionals to help you understand your condition and guide you through the treatment process. Let’s chat.

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