In addition to the physical aches and pains associated with getting older, many elderly Americans also suffer from mental and emotional problems as well. This may include loneliness, anxiety, or depression. A recent study testing the effect of a certain drug to aid in depressive symptoms in seniors offered a little background information as well.
The article stated that depression, a known and relatively common psychological diagnosis, affects over 120 million people all over the globe. It is estimated that depression also affects almost 20% of America's seniors--that's about 6.5 million people. Additionally, depression is a leading cause of disability and the 4th leading contributor to the global burden of disease in 2000. Depression is a difficult disease, since it can impact patients in a variety of ways. The feelings of depressing may ebb and flow, or may be consistent. They might also affect a person physically as well as mentally and could lead to digestive disorders. In the most severe cases, depression may also lead to suicidal thoughts or actions.
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