Understanding Mental Health Issues in Seniors

The 1948 constitution of the World Health Organization defines health as a “state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”

Mental health is an important component of the overall well-being of an individual. Unfortunately, there are a large number of people in the world who don’t get to enjoy this privilege.

20% of the world’s adult population aged 55 and above suffers from a mental health issue. Moreover, the National Alliance of Mental Illness estimates that 18.5% of older adults in the United States experience a mental illness in a given year.

Here are the most common mental health conditions experienced by senior adults.


There are many factors that cause depression in senior individuals such as retirement, divorce, widowhood, loneliness or illness. As depression can lead to other physical and mental issues, it’s extremely important to seek treatment when suffering from this mood disorder. Some symptoms that can help family members identify that their senior loved one is suffering from depression are sadness, sleeping problems, social inactivity, discomfort and just ‘slowing down’ in life.


A report by National Institute of Mental Health states that anxiety is experienced by 19.1% of the older adults in the U.S. Anxiety is also a mood disorder that can be recognized by sleep problems, chronic fatigue, nervousness, and uncontrollable worry.

Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder is a manic-depressive disorder. The patient suffering from this mental health problem experiences dramatic shifts in mood and energy. According to a report, 4.4% of the United States adult population suffers from bipolar disorder. The symptoms include agitation, confusion, and hyperactivity, loss of judgment, and memory problems.

Dissociative Disorders

Individuals suffering from dissociative disorders experience a disconnection from thoughts and memories. The symptoms of this mental illness are memory loss, stress, inability to cope with stress and a blurred sense of self-identity.


Schizophrenia is a severe mental disorder that affects all the major aspects of an individual’s personality including their thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. Patients who have schizophrenia find it difficult to continue daily activities. They don’t feel happy in everyday life and they have a hard time concentrating on tasks.

Caring for someone who is suffering from any of these mental health problems can be emotionally and physically draining, but there’s nothing more rewarding when they start showing signs of improvement.

How Can We Help?

AvantGarde Senior Living and Memory Care is a senior housing community in Woodland Hills, where trained and educated staff provide the best level of care to senior loved ones suffering from mental health problems.

We also offer independent living and assisted living plans.

Call us at (818) 881-0055 for details.