How to Help Prevent Depression among Elders during COVID-19

As the cases of Coronavirus are on a rise, it is imperative to keep a close eye on the mental health of the elderly. Many, alongside worrying about the fast-moving pandemic, are also wondering how to deal with elder parents, grandparents, or even community elders.

While talking to Matt Romeo, Prime Care, Florida, Dr. Pariksith Singh gives pointers to help seniors and the elderly cope up with depression in these times.

Dr. Pariksith Singh asks everyone to keep a close watch on the seniors of the community, as they fear the loss of connection with the world and with their loved ones during these tough times. We should keep them active, keep talking to them and help them when needed. He points out a few very important things, he says:

  • The elderly in our society have the fear of loss of connection with the world, loss of connection with their loved ones.
  • To help them with this, we must reassure them that staying at home does not mean become inactive. We should help them to stay active, stay in touch with the world and their loved ones.
  • Help them to find something that they love to do, reading, writing letters, knitting or even help them learn video calling like FaceTime.
  • We can call and talk to them on phones, everything does not have to be texting or smartphones or TikTok or Instagram.
  • Our seniors are quite intelligent people they lived through very hard times. This, although it's rough, they have been through this.

As he talks about the current scenario, Dr. Singh says, "As debility and depression set in, we need to make sure they (elders) are active, get them out in the sun, make sure they stay well-nourished, make sure they take their vitamins, make sure that they are in touch with the world, so that they know what is happening. So, my request to also our physicians, healthcare workers, call them, talk to them, connect with them and be there for them if they need anything."

He says the most important thing for them to know is being connected, being able to do things that they've wanted, not losing their independence and knowing that there is someone who cares for them.

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