Our Senior Care Blog

Senior Care: 4 Steps to Help Seniors in Murrieta, CA Manage Anxiety

 

The Anxiety and Depression Association of America reports that anxiety disorders are the most common mental illnesses in the United States, affecting 40 million adults each year. If you are a family caregiver struggling to help your loved one manage their anxiety, Visiting Angels of Murrieta, CA is here to help. There are four key steps to help a senior better manage their anxiety.

1. Learn the Signs and Symptoms of Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety expresses itself in many different ways. Below are five of the most common anxiety disorders along with signs and symptoms to watch out for:

  • Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD):

    Scientific research reported by WebMD found that generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) may be the most common mental health disorder among older adults. GAD is characterized by exaggerated, unrealistic worry over everyday things that exist for six months or more. Symptoms include muscle tension, difficulty concentrating, nausea, headaches, insomnia, and trembling.

  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD):

    Those with OCD deal with uncontrollable, unwanted thoughts (obsessions) or behaviors (rituals). For example, they want to rearrange things around them in a precise way or repeatedly check if the stove is off.

  • Panic disorder:

    A panic disorder is characterized by panic attacks, which are sudden bouts of intense fear that come when there’s no present danger. Symptoms include shortness of breath, dizziness, heart palpitations, and chest pain.

  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

    After a traumatic event, those who suffer from PTSD may experience flashbacks, depression, nightmares, irritability, or distractions.

  • Phobia
    A phobia is an intense fear of a particular thing that poses very little danger.

2. Understand Seniors’ Difficulty Getting Anxiety Diagnosed and Treated

Since anxiety can cause physical symptoms, it is often misdiagnosed in older adults. If a senior goes through a medical difficulty, it may cause anxiety or worsen anxiety that already existed. If your loved one shows symptoms of anxiety, make an appointment with their primary care provider. Viable treatment includes cognitive-behavioral therapy or medication.

3. Learn About Anxiety’s Impact on Mental and Physical Health

Research shows that anxiety increases the risk of other mental and physical ailments. They include memory problems, physical disability, or death. Also, the National Alliance on Mental Health reports that anxiety disorders can occur alongside other mental health issues, including depression and ADHD.

4. Support Them During Their Anxiety Treatment

Often, the best things that you can give a senior during their anxiety treatment is a listening ear and a helping hand. But, if you aren’t able to, consider hiring a qualified senior care professional from an accredited senior care agency (i.e. Visiting Angels of Murrieta, CA).

A senior caregiver can help your loved one follow their doctor’s recommendations whether it’s providing medication reminders or transporting them to therapy appointments.

Call Visiting Angels of Murrieta, CA at 951-355-1940 to learn more about our senior care and how we can help your loved one feel safe and comfortable in their own home.

Each Visiting Angels agency is a franchise that is independently owned and operated. The Franchisor, Living Assistance Services Inc., does not control or manage the day to day business operations of any Visiting Angels franchised agency.