Navigating Geriatric Depression: Guide for Nursing Homes

When working with the vintage population, especially individuals with dementia, you often will see signs of geriatric depression. Below is a guide to navigating geriatric depression and creating a positive environment that is supportive to individuals dealing with depressive symptoms. 

 

Start by ruling out medical conditions...

According to the Diagnostic Statistical Manual (DSM-V), we are required to rule out medical conditions before diagnosing a mental condition; medical conditions can cause/exacerbate mental conditions and vice versa.

From a clinician’s standpoint, refer your resident to a physician first for a full physical with a blood work-up and urinalysis.

 

Screening Residents for Signs & Symptoms

Some of these you may be able to screen and notice on your own but others you may need to refer the resident to a physician for a diagnosis. 

 

Screen for Common Health Issues that Affect Mood

  • Electrolyte imbalances
  • Dehydration
  • Malnutrition
  • ...
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