Depression is particularly common in hospitalized and institutionalized elders. Older single men have the highest suicide rate of any demographic group. Older patients with depression are more likely to have somatic complaints, less likely to report depressed mood, and more likely to experience delusions than younger patients. In addition, depression may be an early symptom of a neurodegenerative condition such as dementia. Depressed patients who have comorbid conditions (such as heart failure) are at higher risk for hospitalization, tend to have longer hospital stays, and have worse outcomes than their nondepressed counterparts.
Depression may be mild, moderate, or severe. Treatment includes counseling, antidepressant medication, and electroconvulsive therapy (ECT).
Symptoms of Postpartum Depression
• Irritability and agitation
• Lack of energy
• Less responsive to the infant
• Loss of pleasure in normal
• Suicide thoughts