depression in caregivers

Depression in Caregivers – What to Look Out For

depression in caregiversMany caregivers of the elderly are so busy taking care of the needs of their loved ones or clients that they don’t ever realize that they need help as well. This can be devastating to them because before they know it, they will end up not being able to provide the care that they have always delivered.

If you’re a caregiver, it’s best to take a step back from time to time to ensure you are okay. You may want to pay attention to how you feel, what you’re thinking and what your body is doing.

How to Know You May Be Suffering from Depression

Take time to do this now. Go through the following to see if you may be experiencing depression symptoms.

  • You don’t find enjoyment in the things that used to make you happy.
  • You feel as though you’re walking around in a cloud all of the time.
  • You’re not sleeping as well as you did before. You may wake up multiple times in the night or experience restlessness. Usually, you know you’re dealing with restlessness at night when you don’t feel rested when you awake in the morning.
  • You don’t eat as well as you used to because your appetite is different.
  • You may be eating more as a way to satisfy your emotions.
  • You’re getting many more colds and illnesses.
  • You may be having physical ailments such as stomachaches, headaches, or body aches.
  • Life just seems so hopeless. You feel as though you’re stuck in life with no hope for the future of something better.
  • You don’t feel as though you can do anything about your life. You feel helpless.
  • You are just going through the motions of everyday life. You’re really not experiencing life to its fullest.
  • You may think about ending your life, or harming someone because of your frustration with your life.

These are all symptoms of depression. Experiencing some of these does not mean you definitely suffer from depression. Only a medical professional can give you that diagnosis. However, if you’re feeling any of these and it’s been at least a week, you should seek the guidance of your physician or psychiatrist. These healthcare professionals can give you assessments that will help determine if you do suffer from depression.

Help for Depressed Caregivers

Usually, medication can be prescribed, and counseling is recommended. While these both can be effective forms of treatment, personal consulting can help as well.

Many people suffer depression because they feel as though they are alone. They lose that power they feel when there are people around them that understand what they are going through. When people have someone on their side, they feel much better about themselves and their situations. They feel as though they do have control over their lives, that life does have a hopeful future, and that there are many things to be grateful for, despite all of the negatives.

If you’re struggling with sadness or depression, please set up a session with me. I can help you. Contact me today to learn more about Van Blarcom Personal Consulting Services.

Image courtesy of stockimages from FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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Kendall E. Van Blarcom, Psy.M. Licensed Psychotherapist (Retired)

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