Depressed elderly shouldn’t miss out on help because of a ‘stiff upper lip’ attitude

Half of older people experience mental health problems, but many feel they have to keep a stiff upper lip and soldier on rather than seek help.

According to YouGov’s research, depression is both the most common and most treatable mental illness in old age, which affects nearly eight million people aged 55 and over in the UK.

To mark World Mental Health Day, national charity Age UK is joining forces with NHS England to encourage older people to seek help and is calling on GPs to spot the warning signs earlier.

Caroline Abrahams, Age UK director, said: “In recent years there’s been nothing short of a cultural revolution in our willingness to be open about mental ill health, but it’s one that may well have left many older people behind. They grew up in an era when there was a real stigma associated with mental illness so for many these attitudes are deeply ingrained and still driving their behaviour today.”

’Feeling depressed or anxious is just something they have to put up with’

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