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How Psychological Counseling Can Lead to Improved Happiness and Health for Seniors

  • Synopsis: Published: 2014-11-22 - Gold Crest Care Center focuses on how psychological counseling can lead to improved happiness and health for the elderly. For further information pertaining to this article contact: Gold Crest Care Center at

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Quote: "Depression that goes undiagnosed increases the risk of suicide; in fact, it's the leading risk factor for suicide among seniors."

Gold Crest Care Center, a trusted Bronx nursing home, is spreading the word that psychological issues are not simply a natural consequence of aging. With as many as 95 percent of skilled nursing residents suffering from mental illness, psychological counseling is a vital service to help seniors continue a happy and healthy life.

Depression, anxiety and dementia commonly affect seniors.

Many cases can improve with treatment, notes Dr. Owen Golden, Gold Crest Care Center's Medical Director. Seniors often feel embarrassment at asking for help for psychological issues, making counseling services even more important.

The American Psychiatric Association notes that a number of factors can cause psychological issues in seniors:

  • Medication side effects.
  • Poor diet that causes deficiencies.
  • Heart and lung diseases.
  • Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and Huntington's disease.

Untreated mental illness can have serious consequences for older seniors, reports the National Alliance on Mental Illness.

Depression that goes undiagnosed increases the risk of suicide; in fact, it's the leading risk factor for suicide among seniors. Depression also increases the risk of death from other causes.

The high rate of psychological illness among older seniors, in particular, can be related to some life events that often occur when an individual reaches an advanced age: feelings of loss of independence, chronic pain, disability, death of friends and loved ones, and limited mobility.

Mental health and physical health affect each other, Dr. Golden notes. Symptoms of mental illness often mimic physical issues and are easily misdiagnosed, and they are sometimes wrongly written off as inescapable consequences of aging.

Common symptoms include:

  • Loss of interest in social outings and activities.
  • Excessive loss of energy, changes in sleep and tiredness during the day.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Weight changes.
  • Loss of memory.
  • Constipation.
  • Aches and pains.
  • Trouble maintaining a home or finances.
  • Changes in appearance or hygiene.
  • Feelings of guilt.
  • Suicidal thoughts.

Because of the stigma often associated with mental illness, seniors are more likely to seek help for physical symptoms than psychological symptoms. Bronx rehabilitation center Gold Crest Care Center provides a full range of medical services to appropriately diagnose any problems impeding residents from enjoying a dynamic, satisfying lifestyle. Board-certified physicians and registered nurses are on call around the clock to provide any needed care.

For more information, contact Gold Crest Care Center:

Related Information:

  1. Malnutrition and Seniors: Ensuring the Elderly are Not Malnourished - Thomas C. Weiss - (2014-05-29)
  2. Celiac Disease - Depression and Disordered Eating in Women - Penn State - (2011-12-27)
  3. Family Caregivers Overwhelmed by Caregiving Responsibilities - AARP New York - (2014-09-29)

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