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Alternative Depression Therapies for Seniors

Depression affects the elderly differently than younger people and often occurs along with other medical conditions making it harder to diagnose. In addition, the side effects of antidepressants can increase the risk of other problems for older people. More and more seniors are turning to alternative therapies to treat depression, which can be beneficial whether used alone or in conjunction with medication.

Oils and Supplements

Seniors who wish to steer clear of prescription medications in favor of more natural therapies often turn to essential oils and dietary supplements. These products work by helping the body return to its natural state. Fish oil concentrate, while known primarily for its anti-inflammatory benefits, has been determined in a number of studies to help with depression. Lavender, with its sedative and calming properties, is known to lift feelings of anxiety and depression. Both can be used alone or blended with other oils.


According to a report published by the Psychiatric Times, the use of acupuncture produced promising results when used to treat mild depression. Other studies have found that the combination of acupuncture and small amounts of ECT works as well as some antidepressants. However, research on the effectiveness of acupuncture is limited.


Physical activity may be one of the best natural remedies for depression. A Duke University study found improvement in people whose treatment plan included aerobic exercise. It was found to be especially beneficial when it continued long-term. If you’re unable to shuttle your loved one to and from fitness classes or they need extra mobility support, an experienced caregiver in Las Vegas can provide the assistance your loved one needs.

Spiritual Healing

Because they nurture feelings of gratitude and loving-kindness, many people get comfort from spiritual practices and meditation. A study published in the Archives of General Psychiatry found that meditation worked as well as antidepressant medications in preventing depression relapses.

For more information on senior health and emotional wellbeing, give Las Vegas Home Care Assistance a call at (702) 550-3185. We offer flexible hourly and live-in care plans, and our team of experienced caregivers can cook healthy meals, run errands, offer medication reminders, and provide consistent companionship and emotional support to your senior loved one. Sometimes a little extra help makes a big difference.