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Benefits of Counseling

Every day, counseling makes a difference in the lives of people around the world. And it’s especially helpful for seniors.

"Seniors are living longer today and experiencing unique problems. They’re dealing with a loss of purpose after retirement and the loss of loved ones in addition to physical ailments," saysPsychologist Morris Gelbart, Ph.D. "Seniors are more likely to have higher levels of depression and anxiety than the general population."

Reduce Stress and Anxiety

Many seniors often hide these feelings of worry, frustration, loneliness and anxiety from their friends, family and doctors.

If this sounds like you, consider talking to your primary care physician or to a THIPA psychologist or psychiatrist. This month is National Counseling Month and a time to recognize professional counseling can help you deal with:

• The death of a spouse, partner or friend

• Caring for a spouse with dementia

• Moving from your home

• Health problems

• Lack of social connections

• Sadness or grief around the holidays

Prevent or Treat Depression

Counseling is especially important for seniors who experience feelings of sadness or hopelessness lasting longer than one month. These feeling are often associated with depression.

"Depression is not a state of mind, it is a true illness," saysPsychiatrist Stephen Prover, M .D. "The good news is depression is very treatable at any age. Most older people have the skills to cope. If they’re treated they can do very well."

Avoid Substance Abuse

Counseling is also important for seniors who may be "self-medicating" with prescription pain medication, anti-anxiety medication or alcohol. Instead, counseling can provide you with new behaviors or thought patterns that can help you deal more easily with daily challenges so you don’t need to rely on alcohol or drugs.

Categories: Healthy Living,News

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