Finding it hard and feeling low is more common that you think. Depression effects around 22% of men over 65 and 28% of women. The five key factors according to Age Concern are; Participation in meaningful activities, Relationships, Poverty, Discrimination and physical health. This can all come across very bleak and it’s a very real issue. There are a number of things you can do or encourage someone to do that will have a huge impact in mitigating mood. Here are a few tips to help you.
Avoid too much news: Let’s be honest it’s not been great this year. Limit this to fifteen minutes a day to keep up to date if you need to.
Fresh air and a change in environment: Going out for a walk or just wrapping up and having a cupper in the garden will naturally lift mood.
Meaningful contact: write letters to friends or family, dial them up or even better video call them for a chat. Distance doesn’t have to effect contact. Many seniors have taken to learning video calling and find it a revelation, especially if you are confined to home.
Don’t be slow in asking for help: You’re not alone, there will be local support groups or engage someone to help you around the house or for companionship. By taking action you are making positive steps to improving your wellbeing.
Be prepared – Get in touch with your GP, tell them how you feel. GP’s are still there to support you and will prioritise mental health so don’t be hesitant in contacting them.
I hope you find these useful, other good resources are the Samaritans available 24/7 for free on 116 123, Mind info line 0300 123 3393 & your local GP.