What Is Senior Psychiatry?
As we get older, they say seniors go through a natural process, which often has unfortunate side effects on the brain. While dementia, alcohol abuse, substance abuse, Alzheimer’s disease, chronic pain, disability, poor diet, and other similar disorders are common in the elderly, they can effectively be treated and improved with the use of medication and mental exercises. There is no “certain age” when mental health issues begin to affect individuals. Genetics, environmental factors, and life experiences can all have an impact on a person’s mental health. Just because someone is old they should not be stigmatized as unnatural or untreatable. PNS believes a healthy mind is crucial for living a happy and a fulfilling life. Don’t let stress weigh you or a loved one’s life down or dictate actions.
Our Psychiatry team understands there is a reality of growing older. Certain conditions can dramatically affect your life and become a debilitating hazard if left unchecked. As psychiatrists we may prescribe medications, suggest helpful games, and show you routines to improve your memory and cognitive acuity. We look for signs of detachment, depression, anxiety, real and unreal fears and anxiety. We work to alleviate the triggers of stress.
Many people associate seniors, who are aging suffer from mental deterioration – through treatment, management, and practice, your cerebral functions can be maintained and even expanded. Your brain is the same as any other muscle in your body; as you age, your muscles undergo changes and can weaken due to repeated injuries or usage. Just like any other muscle, through psychiatry, we can heal and strengthen and develop the right rehabilitation plan. A psychiatric evaluation can lead to a “physical training” of the mind.
Just because you, or someone you love is growing older, it does not mean you must accept disappearing capabilities of the mind.
Alcohol/Chemical Dependency Therapy
Alcohol dependency is an addiction and chemical dependence on alcohol. An alcoholic is someone who continues to use alcohol despite negative consequences. Because alcohol is toxic to the human mind and body, this dependency can have disastrous affects on a person’s health and life.
The goal of senior medication management is to positively impact the health outcomes of the patient, it helps us to deliver the right medication and the right dosage for you as an individual. Psychiatry has many medications, which necessitates actively engaging proper management in the decision-making process. We must first understand the patient’s medication experience, tolerance, resistance, and metabolism in prescribing medication.
Depression and Anxiety
For many seniors, their lives have been literally flipped upside down. They went from producing in society, taking care of others, to retirement and being taken care of on sometimes a daily basis. Depression, fear, and anxiety often set in slowly (sometimes rapidly) and can make for an uncomfortable emotion. Adding to depression can be deteriorating physical health, chronic pain, medication interactions, which only further the downward spiral of emotions.
Our team of Psychiatrists and Physicians have been specially trained to work with the senior population. It is incredibly important we treat everyone with respect, dignity, care, and love.
Dementia often sets in faster then we can imagine. In senior psychiatry, we often see symptoms which affect memory, thinking, rationalization, and social abilities. Dementia can actually be several diseases affecting the brain at once (and, just because you have memory loss, does not mean you have dementia).
Psychiatrists often see Alzheimer’s disease as the most common cause of a progressive dementia in seniors, but there are a number of causes of dementia. Depending on the cause, some dementia symptoms may be reversible. TMS (see below) often can help slow the mental deterioration.
Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS)
Transcranial magnetic stimulation. Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) has been used in psychiatry for years and is a noninvasive procedure, which Dr. Alva uses to stimulate nerve cells in the brain to improve symptoms related to brain deterioration, dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, depression, and PTSD. TMS uses magnetic fields, there is no injection, or trauma to the patient. TMS is often used when other forms of treatment have proven to be ineffective.
What's The Difference Between Alzheimer's Disease and Dement
This Psychiatry video addresses fears about memory loss and dementia. It also provides practical advice about senior brain health.