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Counseling Older Adults – Experienced Therapists

Getting older can come with a range of mental health challenges unique to seniors. Counseling older adults is an excellent way of accessing mental health support.

Counseling for Seniors

Counseling Older Adults

Getting older can pose challenges for a person’s mental and physical health. While aging is not necessarily linked to mental health concerns, some of the consequences of getting older can cause challenges for seniors’ mental and behavioral health. 

Accepting failing health and transitioning from independent to assisted living can be harsh on older people. Managing medications as health conditions are becoming more complex is another challenge. Geriatric counseling services are specifically targeted to address these concerns. They take into account the age and life experience of the client as well as the uniqueness of the problems they are facing compared to other mental health clients. 

Counseling services for the elderly vary depending on the person’s location and condition. But all services are tailored to older individuals when it comes to the therapists’ experience and specialization and their approach to counseling the elderly. Counseling techniques older adults respond to can vary from those used for other patients.

Counseling older adults can be essential in navigating significant life changes successfully. As people age, mental and behavioral health is as important as physical health. All three of those areas are closely connected, and counseling services for seniors can help maintain a balance between them. 

How does TrueCare™’s Senior Counseling Work?

TrueCare™’s approach to mental health counseling for seniors is adaptive and always puts the individual first. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to counseling services for elderly clients. 

Instead, successful counseling takes into account the individual’s life journey and how it may have influenced their mental health up to this point. Counselors take a holistic approach, considering how physical health challenges and long-term habits may have affected a person’s mental health. 

Choosing TrueCare™ for counseling services for the elderly also means choosing flexibility. The platform gives flexible access rather than tying clients and their loved ones into lengthy contracts. Senior clients benefit by accessing the care they need fast without needing to worry about spiraling costs. 

Why Should You Consider TrueCare™ for Elderly Counseling Services?

TrueCare™ is a proven provider of mental and behavioral health services for elderly clients. Through an extensive network of specialists across the United States, the platform gives clients access to counselors without delay.

There is no need to register on a waitlist and suffer for longer. The TrueCare™ approach ensures that clients have access to care as and when they need it. For elderly clients, less than optimal mental health is closely linked to diminished quality of life. Having quick access to high-quality care helps seniors live the remaining years to the fullest. 

TrueCare™’s network of counselors and other mental health professionals also ensures that clients can easily access general and specialist mental health care. There is no need for time-consuming research once the need for a specialist has been identified. 

Process for Counseling the Elderly

Geriatric counseling services work best when trust exists between the counselor and the client. It takes time to establish and grow this trust; the counseling process follows several steps:

Assessment/risk assessment: this is when the counselor meets with the client and learns more about their potential mental health challenges. In the context of assisted living, many new residents get the proposal to do an assessment even if they currently have no complaints. It can establish whether they may be at risk of deteriorating mental health.

Treatment plan: specialist counselors then develop a treatment plan based on the assessment. The project will typically include a suggested number of counseling sessions. Therapists will also advise their clients on which type of talk therapy they will use during the sessions. 

Sessions commence: not every mental health condition responds to the same type of therapy. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) works well for several mental health challenges. On the other hand, seniors with problematic behaviors like difficulties managing their medication often respond better to a more practical behavioral therapy approach. 

Regular review: like medication, counseling may take several sessions to show positive effects. In some cases, therapists may change their initial approach. That is why regular reviews of the treatment and its efficiency are critical.

Techniques of Counseling for Seniors

Conventional wisdom has it that laughter is the best medicine. When it comes to counseling techniques older people respond to, laughter therapy is one of the options. While laughter therapy may no be the most common approach to therapy for the elderly, studies have shown that one hour of laughter therapy over several weeks can help reduce stress and promote healthy aging. 

Other forms of counseling techniques the elderly benefit from include: 

  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT)
  • Animal-assisted therapy
  • Exercise training
  • Music and art therapy

CBT is a form of talk therapy that has been scientifically proven to support recovery from psychological disorders at any age. During counseling sessions, counselors focus on behavioral and cognitive techniques and how those influence their mental health. For seniors, this approach has proven to be effective in treating depression. 

Regular exercise is one of the most beneficial habits seniors can develop or maintain to support their overall health. Exercise training can improve older people’s mobility, strength, and balance while fostering emotional well-being. 

Regarding reducing anxiety and fostering companionship, animal-assisted therapy has been proven to be a practical approach to counseling services for the elderly. Pets have been very effective in reducing loneliness among senior residents of nursing homes. 

Music and art therapy allow seniors to be creative and connect with others in a relatively informal setting. To benefit from this approach to counseling services for the elderly, clients do not need to be talented. They need to enjoy participation. Art therapy has been associated with better cognitive function and reduced anxiety. In randomized trials, music therapy has been shown to improve symptoms of depression and loneliness within weeks. 

Which approach works best for an individual depends on their symptoms and the condition’s underlying causes. Once clients have been assessed, their counselor will suggest the most suitable course of treatment. 

Why Do Older People Seek Counseling?

Reasons, why older people seek counseling can vary widely. But statistics show clearly a substantial need for counseling for seniors. 

While numbers can vary widely between different demographics and locations, studies have proven that seniors are more susceptible to developing depression in institutional settings than in households. Counselors understand that their approach to in-home counseling for seniors needs to differ from that in an assisted living scenario. 

Some of the leading causes for seniors seeking counseling support include:

  • Depression and anxiety dealing with loss and grief
  • Adapting to life transactions
  • Accepting increasing frailty and failing health

 

As people get older, they tend to experience more losses than younger people. That is why grief counseling for seniors is essential. With loss and grief often comes increased loneliness, predisposing seniors to depression and anxiety. A lack of social contact is one of the most notable predictors of mental illness in seniors. 

Getting older often means dealing with significant changes and adjustments. Moving into assisted living can feel like the beginning of the last phase of someone’s life. Coping with this realization is difficult without counseling support. 

Aging also leads to increased frailty. Especially for seniors who are used to being active, weakness and limited mobility can be hard to come to terms with. Counseling can ease this process. 

FAQs on In-Home Counseling

What are senior counseling services?

Counseling for seniors refers to counseling services targeted at citizens over the age of 60. The mental health concerns of older adults can differ substantially from those raised by younger adults, which is why a different approach is needed.  

Is there an age limit for counseling?

No. Even if an older person has never before used counseling services, their mental and behavioral health can benefit from this type of support. There is no age limit to the effectiveness of mental health support. 

 
 Where can older people find counseling services?

Seniors can access mental and behavioral health support in assisted living facilities, in their own homes, at a counselor’s practice, or online. Platforms like TrueCare™ have built a solid reputation for providing high-quality support through all those channels. It allows clients to choose the type of therapy that benefits them the most. Accessing these services is easy and convenient, and there is no need to commit to a long course of treatment. What’s more, some mental and behavioral health care services are covered by Medicare.

Where does counseling for the elderly take place?

Wherever is most convenient for the client, counseling is effective when conducted at home, at a counselor’s practice, or in an assisted living residence. Plus, there are options for online therapy, too. 

Which conditions can counselors treat?

Counselors can treat a variety of conditions, including anxiety and depression, grief and loneliness, and other mental and behavioral health issues. 

About TrueCare™

TrueCare™ is a nationwide Health & Wellness platform for families and businesses providing end-to-end solutions for COVID-19 testing, screening, vaccination, home care, and corporate well-being services.
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