Fall 2014 Generations addresses the complex topic of mental illness and substance use in older adults. Elders now transitioning from middle to later life are expected to use and misuse psychoactive medications, as well as alcohol and illicit drugs, more than did other generations. Also mood disorders and other serious mental illnesses do not necessarily fade with old age.
￼The approaching demographic wave of aging Baby Boomers will bring unprecedented growth in the number of Americans with mental health or substance use disorders, all of whom will need services over the coming decades. There are approximately 5.6 to 8 million Americans ages 65 and older who have a mental health or substance use disorder (Institute of Medicine [IOM], 2012). By the year 2030, this number is projected to reach 10.1 to 14.4 million older Americans (IOM, 2012).
The holiday season can be a stressful time, especially for family caregivers. What can professionals who work with older adults do to help their clients and their clients’ caregivers during the holidays (and all the time) to help manage stress, and enjoy the season? Here are three places to start:
Interested in Caregiving?
What do professionals in the field of aging gain from participating in the ASA Leadership Institute?
The 2015 ASA Leadership Institute prepares the next generation of leaders to face the challenges and opportunities of our diverse, aging society:
Speaking with neurologist Adam Gazzaley is akin to running behind an experienced trail racer—they’re always around the next bend and out of sight before you’ve managed to catch your breath. Or as Gazzaley puts it, “I do tend to work pretty intensely.”