The elderly are at high risk for depression because they are more likely than younger people to have experienced illness, death of loved ones, impaired function and loss of independence. The cumulative effect of negative life experiences may be overwhelming to an older person.
Review Date 7/8/2018
Updated by: Ryan James Kimmel, MD, Medical Director of Hospital Psychiatry at the University of Washington Medical Center, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.