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Depression in the Elderly: 7 Ways to Help

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Depression in older adults

Older people are at risk for depression, are underserved by the mental health profession, and have the highest rates of suicide in the country. But many seniors are resistant to treatment because they don't want to burden their families, or equate depression with weakness or even death.

"One of the hardest questions I get from families is, 'How can I get my elderly loved one mental health help when they don't want it?' " says Joel E. Streim, MD, professor of geriatric psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania.

Here are some coping strategies.

Next: Don't dismiss symptoms

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