How might we decrease depression in seniors during COVID-19?
Goal 3: Good Health & Well-being| By: Melissa
COVID-19 has created a new environment for seniors causing them to fear for their futures and thus, leading to an increase in depression and loneliness. The pandemic has changed seniors' lives indefinitely. Those living in senior homes are suffering in quarantine and are being isolated from their loved ones. Since the beginning of March, there has been a range of restrictions created to protect them from the pandemic and many have had to find ways to keep busy in their homes. Many seniors used to keep themselves busy by doing things like playing music, reminiscing over old pictures, and picking up hobbies like jigsaw puzzles, knitting, and crossword puzzles. However, family members are desperate to be reunited with their loved ones and have turned towards applications like FaceTime and Zoom, so seniors can feel as if they are connecting with them in-person. The new restrictions in Alberta now allow family members to be able to book times to visit their loved ones once they test negative for COVID-19. However, due to the ongoing pandemic, there are still strict restrictions in place for seniors living in homes and a lot of them are wondering when they will be able to return to their old routine.
Depression in seniors is something that I was drawn to explore since I worked in a retirement home in high school and at the Kerby Centre during my work placement. I also have family members who work in a retirement home and I wanted to explore how COVID-19 has impacted the mental health of seniors. During my research, I discovered that seniors with dementia have difficulty understanding why they are being isolated from their loved ones.