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Why do older people often resist getting help for depression?

Dr. Aruna V. Josyula, MD
Geriatric Medicine Specialist

Because few older people know enough about depression, they do not recognize the symptoms and believe that they can handle their mood changes on their own. (In fact, only 38 percent of Americans age 65 and older consider depression a “health” problem). For some seniors, there is a social stigma about having a mental health issue. Many people in their 80s and 90s have lived through the Great Depression, World War II and other significant historical events that have led them to adopt an attitude of “be strong” and “do what you have to do.” This understandable mindset can become a barrier to seeking help.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.