Mental Illness Is Not a Typical Part of Aging

October 7, 2023 by andrew

We all know great mental health is a vital part of our lifestyle. Yet barriers still exist when it comes to obtaining support and therapy for mental illness.

Mental illness is not a typical part of aging, and in Los Angeles, where the elderly population is significant, this understanding is a crucial aspect of mental health care. While aging can bring about unique challenges such as cognitive decline or loneliness, it’s important to emphasize that mental health issues like depression or anxiety should not be considered a natural consequence of growing older. Mental health care in Los Angeles is dedicated to providing specialized support to seniors, recognizing that they too deserve a high quality of life. Services often include therapy, support groups, and access to professionals who can address the emotional and psychological needs of older adults, ensuring that mental well-being remains a priority regardless of age.

Exactly how common is mental disease? One in 5 Americans will certainly experience it in their life time. For older adults, that figure is one in four. Offered the country’s large aging populace, the variety of older adults with mental health disorders is expected to double by the year 2030.

Despite being so widespread, mental illness remains seriously underdiagnosed and undertreated in older people. Actually, two-thirds of older grownups with mental health issues do not obtain the therapy they require.

Why exists an absence of mental health assistance for older grownups?

If mental disease is such a pressing issue in older Americans, why do so many people stay undiagnosed and unattended? Part of the trouble may be negative stereotypes about aging– the idea that it’s “normal” for individuals to grow lonelier or more unhappy as they age. However, actually, feelings of depression or too much anxiety are not a regular part of aging. They’re signs of treatable medical problems, just like diabetic issues or hypertension.

There is likewise a social stigma (adverse beliefs and mistaken beliefs) bordering mental health concerns today. Absence of recognition and education and learning about mental health can result in discrimination against individuals with mental health issue, making them less likely to seek help and treatment.

Lastly, some older grownups encounter functional barriers when it concerns getting mental health services. Residing in a rural area or lacking transport to and from provider visits can make it difficult for lots of people to get the care they need.

Why is mental health a problem in older grownups?

Older grownups face a higher danger for mental illness as a result of a variety of reasons. These consist of:

  • Loss of a loved one
  • Loneliness and/or social seclusion
  • Chronic ailment or disability
  • Changes caused by retired life
  • Specific drugs
  • Alcohol use or misuse
  • Stress of caregiving

What is one of the most usual mental health issue for older grownups?

Anxiety and depression are among one of the most typical mental health disorders impacting older adults.

Anxiety: Signs and symptoms and therapy

Severe anxiety that disrupts your daily performance can result in a reduced quality of life and even physical health issue. Between 3% and 14% of older grownups meet the criteria for an anxiety disorder.

  • Signs of anxiety in older grownups include:
  • Feelings of excessive anxiousness or concern
  • Uncontrollable, repetitive safety checks
  • Preventing social circumstances
  • Staying clear of routine activities
  • Physical signs like shallow breathing, sweating, shivering, breast pains, frustrations, stomach troubles

Usual anxiety disorders include:

  • Panic attack: Defined by panic attacks or unexpected sensations of terror that strike continuously
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder: Dealing with recurring, unwanted thoughts or rituals
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD): Headaches, depression, and various other consistent signs after a traumatic event
  • Anxieties: Severe concern of something that poses little real threat.
  • Generalized anxiety disorder: Persistent, overstated bother with day-to-day activities.

Anxiety is very treatable with therapy, medicine, or a mix of both. Treatment plans and demands differ for each person.

Depression: Symptoms and therapy.

Depression is a state of mind disorder specified by sensations of extreme despair and misery that last for weeks and even months each time. Greater than 2 million Americans age 65 and older suffer from some kind of depression, with several also experiencing anxiety.

Usual signs and symptoms of depression include:.

  • Loss of enjoyment in day-to-day activities.
  • Poor sleep.
  • Rapid weight gain or loss.
  • Low power.
  • Absence of capacity to focus.

Depression can seriously limit one’s quality of life and ability to deal with themselves. It can additionally bring about physical health issue, such as slower recuperation from physical illness. In addition, clinically depressed individuals go to a greater risk for suicidal ideas and actions.

Like anxiety, depression is a very treatable disorder, with medicine and psychotherapy– or a mix of the two– being the major avenues of therapy.

Take a mental health testing.

If you’re experiencing symptoms of anxiety or depression, you’re not alone; mental health disorders influence millions of older Americans. Aid is available, and healing is feasible. The earlier you recognize and treat your symptoms, the faster you’ll have the ability to feel better.

Start by taking an online testing from Brain Health USA. This is a totally free, confidential, and 100% private method to learn about your personal mental health. While this tool is not the same as an official medical diagnosis, it can aid you begin a discussion with your health care provider or loved ones.

If you or someone you recognize is in dilemma and would love to speak to a trained counselor, dial or message 988 from your phone to reach the National Self-destruction Prevention Lifeline. This solution is complimentary, private, and readily available to anyone in the U.S. 24/7.

Strick reminder from Brain Health USA to seek a doctor’s advice in addition to using this app and before making any medical decisions.

Read our previous blog post here:


1. National Institute of Mental Health. Mental Illness. Found on the internet at

2. Pan American Health Organization. Seniors and Mental Health. Found on the internet at:

3. Mental Health America. Anxiety in Older Adults. Found on the internet at

4. Mental Health America. Depression in Older Adults: More Facts. Found on the internet at


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