May is Mental Health Awareness Month!

Mental health is a complex and diverse area of study. While it impacts the lives of individuals across the age span, focus is often placed on individuals in the earlier phases of life, such as adolescence and young adults. While this trend is changing and new information is coming forward on mature adults and geriatrics, the complexities of mental health and aging require healthcare professionals to address the complexities and dynamics of psychosocial and emotional well-being in the context of multiple disease processes. This dynamic adds complexity to patient profiles and care planning. Cognitive behavioral approaches are best supportive in the reduction of depressive symptoms in individuals with co-morbid dementias (Wiegelmann, et al., 2021). In addition, the benefit of meaningful leisure activities and purposeful exercise are supportive in reducing caregiver burden and aid in managing adverse behaviors associated with advancing dementia (Wiegelmann, et al., 2021).  This study highlights that though mental health in the patient is often our concern as a provider, the mental fatigue that results in caregivers directly impacts the patient and their outcomes (Kabia, et al., 2022). As such, managing psychological distress and the strategies associated are critical for care planning in family members who choose to take on the role of caregiver for aging family members.

At Elite Home Health & Hospice, we recognize the vital role of family members and especially the mental health of both the patient and family members in dealing with disease and dying. We value the role our social workers and chaplains play in supporting the counseling and spiritual needs of these individuals. We also value the role our volunteers play in providing respite for caregivers through meaningful interactions and purposeful conversation. These members are critical in creating a foundation of support and building a comprehensive treatment plan.

Resources for mental health education include: Consider the role that Elite Home Health and Hospice plays in building a comprehensive treatment plan. Access to the right professionals and referrals to community supports are critical in managing rehabilitation after a hospitalization and support the long-term treatment plan for individuals with chronic diseases. These supports allow patients to have better adherence to medical recommendations and treatments. Addressing these concerns is a critical component of a comprehensive treatment plan. Let us know how we can support your patients today.