DEPRESSION IN ELDERLY

I know that many American families have seen this pattern:
1. Loved one requires more care than family can give and loved one enters assisted living facility or nursing home.
2. Loved one is not adjusting well and within months, is diagnosed with depression.
3. Loved one is given “anti-depressants” to “help” with depression.
4. Within months, loved one is not as active, not walking as much, not as engaged with family – often too fatigued to talk.
5. Loved one’s appetite decreases, and perhaps fluid intake decreases as well resulting in weight loss.
6. Months later your formerly active, walking, independent and continent loved one now spends most days in bed and requires a catheter or diaper.

While it is a proven fact that many elderly experience depression – Let’s take the time to examine the root of the problem here. You loose your home, independence and are placed in a small room with concrete or tile floors, with a stranger – Wouldn’t you be depressed?

The “anti-depressants” are likely anti-psychotics not approved by the FDA for use in elederly.

Please do your family a favor – ASK WHAT MEDICATIONS YOUR FAMILY MEMBER IS BEING GIVEN for their “depression” or “anxiety.” If any of the following meds are being given – you need to be diligent in getting a second opinion;
Haldol (haloperidol)
Prolixin (fluphenazine)
Risperdal (Risperidone)
Seroquel (quetiapine)
Thorazine (chlorpromazine)
Zyprexa (olanzapine)

These meds are typically used in those suffering from scitzofrenia, and will cause drastic changes in the elderly.

I know they are being prescribed in nursing homes everywhere, and it is upsetting – I often see very alive nursing home residents over-medicated because staff doesn’t have time to monitor them…

Please be aware!

Lauren Ellerman
Lauren Ellerman

In 2011, Lauren Ellerman was named "Young Lawyer of the Year" by the Roanoke Bar Association for her work in the community. To speak with Lauren about your personal injury case, contact her at lellerman@frithlawfirm.com.