If the holidays this year leave you feeling more humbug than holly jolly, you’re not alone. The holiday season can be an especially difficult time as seniors are reminded of the passage of time and the absence of friends and loved ones who have died or moved away.
Though everyone gets the blues from time to time, depression is a serious illness that can persist for months or even years. The good news is that help is available, whether you or someone you love suffers from this debilitating condition.
Depressed or difficult?
Because earlier generations didn’t view depression as a clinical illness, the American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry (www.aapgpa.org) explains that many older Americans may fear being labeled “difficult” or even believe their condition is the result of a weak character.
On the contrary, depression is a treatable condition. Because of this, learning to recognize depression is important. Learning the following symptoms of depression can help protect you or someone you love:
• Persistent sadness;
• Withdrawal from regular social activities;
• Slowed thinking or response;
• Lack of energy or interest in things that once were enjoyable;
• Excessive worry about finances or health;
• Frequent tearfulness;
• Feelings of worthlessness or helplessness;
• Weight changes;
• Pacing and fidgeting;
• Changes in sleep patterns;
• Inability to concentrate;
• Staring off into space (or at the television) for prolonged periods of time.
If you believe that you or someone you love suffers from depression, don’t wait to get help.
Siloam Springs Internal Medicine offers comprehensive care, from routine and preventive health services to special needs. Helping you to maintain good health and wellness — for a lifetime — is our primary goal. Call 479-215-3070 today to schedule an appointment or visit NW-Physicians.com.
Beat the holiday blues
This year, when the holiday humbug bites, bite back. Use these hints to overcome the blues this season.
• Safety in numbers — Don’t isolate yourself during the holidays. If you can’t be with your family, organize a Zoom call and meet online or reach out to friends.
• The greatest gift — Volunteer your time with a project or organization you believe in. Opportunities to volunteer usually abound during the holidays. Find a project with your church or civic center that uses your talents and you’ll feel better, making an impact on the lives around you.
• Care to share — This year, be willing to express your feelings and concerns to those you love and trust. Sharing your sadness can help you overcome it, while denying or suppressing your feelings can make them worse.
About Siloam Springs Regional Hospital
Siloam Springs Regional Hospital is a 73 licensed bed facility with 42 private patient rooms. It is accredited by the State of Arkansas Department of Health Services and The Joint Commission and was recognized as a four-star hospital by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Services include inpatient and outpatient surgery, emergency medicine, medical, surgical and intensive care units, obstetrics, outpatient diagnostic services and inpatient and outpatient rehabilitation. With more than 50 physicians on the medical staff, Siloam Springs Regional Hospital provides compassionate, customer-focused care. SSRH is an affiliate of Northwest Health, the largest health system in Northwest Arkansas. Siloam Springs Regional Hospital is located at 603 N. Progress Ave. in Siloam Springs. For more information, visit NorthwestHealth.com.