LARGO, Fla. – (Dec. 11, 2012) – The holiday season is a time of sharing with family and friends. When traveling becomes difficult for seniors, the holidays may become depressing and lonely. Larry Prescott, executive director of Grand Villa of Largo (www.largoseniorliving.com), an assisted living facility with a state-of-the-art memory care unit, helps seniors combat holiday depression by offering advice to seniors and their families.
There are 11 signs of depression, according to the Geriatric Mental Health Foundation. Signs of depression include: change in sleep patterns, weight loss or gain, physical aches, lack of energy, irritability, loss of interest in pleasurable activities, feelings of worthlessness, difficulty concentrating, restless or slow movement, suicidal thoughts and change in sex drive. Prescott says there are simple ways to get involved with your senior to help prevent the onset of these signs.
“The holidays are a great opportunity to spend time with loved ones, but it may be a difficult period for seniors with debilitating medical conditions,” says Prescott. “Holiday depression is fairly common among seniors living away from their families, making it important to take the right precautions to prevent emotional distress.”
Personalized gifts are an excellent way to help your senior combat holiday depression. Consider giving your senior a digital frame, which can store and display hundreds of photos. Before sending, load the frame with photos that remind your senior of family gatherings and past holidays. Similarly, create a photo collage or scrapbook to display a variety of photos with positive memories.
Prescott also says that Skype can be used to connect families living apart. The easy-to-use online technology is often considered more personal than a phone call due to the video chat capabilities. Many senior living facilities offer Skype capabilities for their residents.
“It’s important to consider how the holiday can affect your senior and find ways to provide them with comfort and love during what might otherwise be a time of sadness,” says Prescott. “We encourage families to pay extra attention to their seniors during this time of the year and help lift their spirits.”
About Grand Villa of Largo
Grand Villa of Largo (http://www.largoseniorliving.com) is an assisted living and Alzheimer’s care residential community in Largo, Fla. The community offers one bedroom and studio apartments, 24-hour staffing and amenities such as a café, beauty salon and barber shop, billiards parlor, library and a private dining room. For those who are not ready for full-time residency, Grand Villa of Largo offers a senior day program, short-term stays, respite care and a dusk to dawn overnight program.
About Senior Management Advisors, Inc.
Senior Management Advisors (SMA) (www.seniormanagementadvisors.com) is a leading operator of full service independent living, assisted living and Alzheimer’s care residential communities in Florida and Georgia. SMA specializes in rejuvenating and stabilizing senior living communities for owners, financial institutions, private investors and government agencies. SMA’s services include consultation, management, development and renovation of residential communities.