Alcoholism addiction treatment

When an individual feels that they are no longer in control of their addictive habit despite the medications they take or are constantly tempted and exposed to the addictive substance, a rehabilitation program is needed. Alcohol rehabilitation program is an intense recovery program that requires motivation, determination and social support to help the suffering individual […]

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Co morbidity in OCD

Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) is distressing in itself as it affects the individual’s thoughts and behaviour. Through years of studies it is also seen that most often OCD occur with another mental illness. When an individual is diagnosed with two mental disorders it is known as co morbidity. And OCD is seen to have quite […]

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Types of Obsessive Compulsive ...

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is mental disorder that is driven by undesirable thoughts known as obsessions that compels repetitive behaviours, known as compulsions. However, it varies from individual to individual in the way in which symptoms of OCD are experienced. Based on the nature of the symptoms experienced OCD can be divided into different types. […]

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Alcoholism facts

1. Alcoholism causes various short term health hazards. The short term harm alcohol causes are the health conditions apart from diseases. It includes injuries caused by accidents, falls, homicides, sexual assaults, alcohol poisoning, etc. Under the influence of alcohol individuals have judgments and decision making skills are inhibited, this might be the reason behind the harmful […]

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Neurofeedback for alcoholism

A number of new methods and therapeutic techniques are coming up to make the journey towards recovery effective, easier and smoother. One of these attempts is integrating neurofeedback in the recovery program. Neurofeedback is a therapeutic intervention that uses biofeedback mechanism. Here medical instruments, sensors, are attached to the individual’s head and face region. These […]

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Geriatric psychiatry: Proper diagnosis helps treatment

Ageing is a normal process of gradual deterioration of physiological function

geriatric-04accompanied by loss of viability and increase in vulnerability. It is common to all living beings such as animals and plants. Ageing becomes mor
e pronounced and our mental faculties become dull as we grow in age, needing urgent psychiatric care and medication.

Age related issues

Man’s physical abilities and the capacity to apply intellectual reasoning is considerably impaired as he grows old. Geriatric psychiatry, also known as psychiatry of old age, entails treating and dealing with this essentially age-related problem.

Increasing elderly population

In India’s context Geriatric psychiatry has assumed paramount importance. As per the latest provisional data of Census of India, the elderly in the age group of over 60 comprise 8.3% of India’s population, second largest in the world. This 60+ group is also the second fastest growing segment of Indian population. The population growth is likely to register 3.5 times increase by 2050, in percentage terms.

Need for action-plan

This calls for a comprehensive action-plan to deal with Geriatric psychiatry, involving diagnosis, treatment and management of dementia and depression among aged persons. It is important to know that psychiatric illness of the elderly is different from the illnesses of adult patients. Doctors and psychiatrists need to be well prepared to deal with this problem to avoid any future complications.

History important!

To properly diagnose a geriatric psychiatric illness it is imperative to take a detailed note of the elderly’s history. The history needs to focus on:

  • Changes in functional performance of daily life
  • Need to document the drugs consumed
  • Need to know if non-prescription drugs, responsible for psychiatric symptoms are being used
  • Need for a proper physical examination of higher functioning
  • Need to check all sensory systems such as hearing and vision
  • Need to assess mental status through Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE)
  • Need to conduct simple lab tests for electrolyte imbalance, anemia, malnutrition, metabolic abnormalities, urinary retention

Management of Geriatric psychiatry

Psychosocial intervention can make considerable difference to the elderly person’s condition.

  • New drugs working through one neurotransmitter, of late, has been found to be safer
  • Start the treatment without further delay. Risk of suicide increases with delay in treatment
  • There is a need for adequate treatment of co-morbidity
  • Mental functioning of patients and dementia may aggravate if treatment of any illness or severe infection is delayed
  • It is better to avoid benzodiazepine group of drugs that cause more harm than benefit
  • Medication needs to go slow and start slow
  • Any sudden or early withdrawal of medicines should be avoided at all costs

 

 

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