First, separation anxiety in your senior parents is a common problem. Secondly, our loved ones experience it because of age-related stress. In other words, anxiety disorder is not a common occurrence in the elderly. With this in mind, anxiety and its related symptoms keep haunting our aging parents. So, being alone due to the death of a partner or divorce is the main reason for anxiety. In addition, separation anxiety also occurs when adult children begin to move out. I have been through this with my father when my mother passed away and then again when I got married. Adults with separation anxiety have extreme fear that bad things will happen to important people in their lives, such as family members.
Separation anxiety in senior parents
It is important to realize, separation anxiety disorder makes life a mess for the elderly and other people. As a result, this kind of disorder often follows other psychiatric illnesses. Such as mood disorder, or another form of anxiety disorders. As a result, anxiety makes our senior parents more vulnerable. Also, this can develop into other types of mental disorders. Furthermore, anxiety makes our senior parents resort to alcohol and drugs. In this case, this will create more problems and make matters all the more difficult. In other words, it will hurt both our parents and their caregivers as well.
Symptoms of separation anxiety in our senior parents
It’s normal to be concerned about the well-being of loved ones. People with adult separation anxiety disorder experience high levels of anxiety, and sometimes even panic attacks, when loved ones are out of reach.When our senior parents feel the effects of separation anxiety. They exhibit a certain type of behavior. Which is pretty unnatural depending on their age. Here are the symptoms:
Feeling distressed when separated from a special figure
Extreme worry about losing that particular figure
Trouble falling asleep when that particular figure is not there
Feeling anxious whenever thoughts of losing someone or separated from a particular someone
Physical complaints such as a headache or a stomach ache
Feeling of worthlessness
You may also have physical aches and pains, headaches, and diarrhea associated with periods of anxiety.
Another key point, the anxiety refers to excessive fear or anxiety about separation from home or an attachment figure. A point often overlooked, the fear of losing any family member or special friend may give rise to anxiety. Not to mention, the anxiety was only applied to people under the age of 18, now categorized as an anxiety disorder for all stages of life.
The psychologist did not recognize the anxiety in adults. What one fails to understand is that, while anxiety in children is a concern. But the same form of anxiety in adults is even more serious. The reason being, adult brains are far more complex and advanced as compared to that of the children. Therefore, the disorder becomes much more serious. And also it is a consequence when left untreated. It becomes extremely necessary to recognize anxiety in adults. And take steps to manage the same.
Ways to deal with separation anxiety in our senior parents
Separation anxiety in older adults is a newly recognized phenomenon. And is an area that is yet to be fully understood and widely studied. There is very little study in this area. The following treatment options are to manage the condition:
Recognize the symptoms. This is very important to create an appropriate treatment plan.
Treating the anxiety symptoms. Treating other anxiety symptoms may be extremely helpful in this case. While the symptoms of separation anxiety often mimic that of other anxiety disorders. Treating the same with medications is a good idea.
Support groups. Find out local support groups for adult separation anxiety and get in touch with them. These groups have members suffering from similar kinds of anxiety.
Solutions I can help with
Overseeing this can cause you to stress because you can’t be in 2 places at one time: taking care of your business and taking care of your loved one. Look into hiring some help for yourself. This will give you the opportunity to get some rest and also make sure your loved one is properly cared for.
Or maybe you want to spend more time with your loved one while taking a break from some of the redundant business tasks like sending out emails, returning calls, or organizing files. Let’s chat about how I can be of service to you so you can take care of your business and your loved one.
The above-mentioned tips are some of the basic guidelines. This can help with managing separation anxiety in senior parents. anxiety disorder in adults is still in its infancy stage. Much more work and research need to be done in this area before any strong guidelines can be given. The disorder has to be fully understood before any final conclusions can be made. So, before any concrete guidelines can be formulated. Caregivers need to follow the basic steps to help overcome anxiety. Also, check out this post on music therapy.
It can be difficult to attend to your loved one with separation anxiety, but it’s not impossible. With the right knowledge, you can do this. Don’t forget about taking care of yourself and keeping your business going while you are making sure your loved ones are cared for. I’m here to assist you on this journey, schedule your planning session with me so we can look at how to keep your life and your business running smoothly.