Do you sense that middle age is drawing near? It’s not just you. Midlife depression is a global problem, according to a 2008 study using data from 2 million participants.
In the US, it reaches its peak at about age 40 for women and 50 for males, and it typically begins to decline in one’s fifties.
Why? The researchers speculate that by accepting their flaws and virtues, people may come to cherish life more.
Trying to juggle the obligations of your career, marriage, kids, and aging parents? Do you feel depressed, unworthy, or guilty? Up to half of the “sandwich generation”‘s women experience depression as a result of carrying a disproportionate amount of the duties.
Ensure that you are also taking care of yourself. Exercise, get adequate sleep, eat well, spend time with friends, and get help if necessary for depression and caring obligations.
Low B12 levels
It’s possible that you don’t get enough vitamin B12 if you’re feeling down or lethargic. Older people are especially susceptible to the B12 blues because their stomach acid may be insufficient to release B12 from diet.
Request a blood test from your doctor to check your B12 levels. If it’s low, discuss your diet, oral supplements, or an injectable with your doctor to determine whether they’re appropriate for you.
Adaptations in Sex Drive
The vital sex hormone testosterone is produced less and less by men’s bodies as they age. Depression, erectile dysfunction (ED), decreased sex interest, and low testosterone levels are all associated with these conditions.
Request a blood test from your doctor to determine your testosterone levels. Ask your doctor about replacement therapy and other options for treatment if it is low.
Thyroid disorders are the cause
One sign of a seldom hyperactive or underactive thyroid is depression. Additionally, it can be the lone symptom if you are older.
Or it could manifest as a mild symptom. The symptoms of an overactive thyroid may also include weariness, tremors, or heart palpitations.
Constipation or exhaustion may result from an underactive thyroid. Because of this, older individuals frequently confuse this easily curable issue with nervous system or gastrointestinal diseases.
Consult a physician, especially if a close relative suffers from thyroid disease.
Depression is more likely to occur if you have a chronic pain condition like osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis.
In actuality, having depression or an anxiety condition is three times more common in those with chronic pain. Moreover, depression can exacerbate pain.
Exercise, meditation, or music are all effective solutions. A daily hour of classical music has been found to reduce depression and arthritis pain. Consult your doctor if the pain or depression doesn’t go away.
Premenstrual syndrome and menopause
Your mood may suffer as a result of hormonal changes, hot flashes, and perimenopause and menopause-related life changes.
During this transitional time, mood swings or depression may get worse if you have difficulties sleeping, a history of depression, or PMS.
Self-calming techniques like yoga or deep breathing can help with minor depression.
Exercise, go out with friends, find a creative outlet—do whatever makes you feel better. Prescription drugs or talk therapy may be helpful for more severe, persistent symptoms of depression.
The emptiness of the nest
An “empty nest” can leave you feeling lonely if your child has left the house. It could be more difficult if you’re going through menopause or retiring at the same time.
Consider it an opportunity as a possible solution. Reestablish contact with your partner, extended family, and friends. Take up activities and pastimes you previously didn’t have time for.
Be patient with yourself while you adjust. Consult your doctor if, after a few months, your mood doesn’t improve.
Diabetes Type 2
Do you feel too lethargic to frequently check your blood sugar? Do fluctuating blood sugar levels give you a sense of being out of control?
Diabetes is one of many chronic illnesses that can lead to depression, which is both prevalent and deadly. You could find it difficult to properly manage your diabetes if you’re depressed.
If you’ve been depressed for longer than two weeks, go to your doctor. You can treat both diseases with the help of talk therapy, medication, and improved diabetes management. Depression is a serious condition that, if untreated, can be fatal.
One in four older heavy drinkers suffers from serious depression. Stressful life events, such as retirement or the death of a spouse, can prompt some older adults to begin drinking more. However, alcoholism problems are sometimes confused with other age-related concerns.
Both depression and alcoholism can be treated with a combination of drugs. Issues that may lead to drinking can also be addressed through individual or group treatment.