While some amount of stress is a common part of everyday life, there are times when a senior may feel overwhelmed with stress from things like new health conditions, the loss of other older friends and family members, and decreased independence. As your loved one’s primary in-home caregiver, here are a few common signs of stress to be on the lookout for.
A major sign of stress is isolation. Your loved one may stop spending time with dear friends and family members. He or she may also stop going places they once enjoyed, such as church, social gatherings, or group hobbies and activities.
2. Increased Physical Illness
It may sound strange, but stress and anxiety can manifest in the body by making one physically ill. If your senior loved one seems to be experiencing more illnesses and aches and pains but is otherwise healthy, stress could be the culprit.
3. Lack of Sleep
People who are under a lot of stress often have trouble maintaining their usual sleep patterns. They may develop insomnia or sleep for long periods of time. Pay attention to how tired your loved one is on a daily basis and if something seems off or you find that he or she is not sleeping in a healthy manner, talk to them about what the cause may be.
4. Irritability and Other Sudden Changes in Mood
At any age, stress can affect your overall mood. Your loved one may seem overly irritable about a minor issue one minute and become sad and depressed the next. Unusual and sudden mood changes typically mean something is up beyond typical daily stress.
5. Poor Judgment
Perhaps your senior loved one has always been responsible with money but starts spending every penny they have on unnecessary things. Perhaps your loved one was told not to drive anymore but you find out he or she has been taking trips across town. When a senior begins making poor choices and showing a clear lack of judgment, stress might be influencing those decisions.
6. Loss of Appetite or Overeating
If you notice your loved one does not eat as much as he or she once did or perhaps he or she is suddenly eating too much, this could be caused by stress. Talk to the person about how he or she is feeling, both mentally and physically. A well-balanced diet is the key to good health, especially for seniors.
Learn more about promoting your loved one’s emotional health by reaching out to Home Care Assistance. As a trusted provider of home care in Centennial, we ensure seniors have the support and resources necessary to remain happy and healthy in the comfort of home.