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When someone is suffering from a physical injury or illness, it’s most often easy to spot; however, when it comes to how we feel inside, it can be much harder to discern. When looking after the elderly, much attention is paid to their physical needs, but as anyone who has completed a counselling course will tell you, it’s just as important to keep an eye on their mental well-being.

When talking about seniors, the risk of mental health issues rises because of factors like isolation, loss, ill health and all the other challenges that ageing brings - so early detection is vital. Here we look at five mental health warning signs you should look out for, as well as how counselling courses can help you gain entry into what is an incredibly rewarding profession.

Sign #1 - Behavioral Changes

The first symptom we look at relates to changes in their normal behaviour, as this is a big indicator of mental distress. Often overlooked and classed as ‘just having a bad day’, even small changes in their daily routines and rituals point towards there being something wrong. These indicators can be subtle, but they still may indicate a problem. 

Sign #2 - Problems With Decision-making

Take any mental health-related short courses online, and you’ll find out that emotional distress can also manifest in difficulty making decisions. This could relate to confusion, memory problems, anxiety, judgement or simply not caring about the outcome - all of which potentially point towards the need for counselling. 

Sign #3 - Withdrawing Socially

As counselling courses show us, precisely the same considerations need to be made with the elderly as with everyone else. We all need a certain amount of social interaction, which doesn’t really change as we age. So, if the person you’re caring for withdraws socially, it could represent the early stages of a mental or emotional problem they may need help with. 

Sign #4 - Going Off Their Food

When emotional or mental issues take hold, they can overwhelm the person involved, leading to a lack of enjoyment in the usual things that make them happy - like food. Anxiety is often associated with nausea, too, so it’s understandable that appetite is impacted for some. It could just be that they need to talk to someone. 

Sign #5 - Aggressive Behaviour

When engaging in counselling courses, you’ll discover many different ways in which emotional or mental distress can manifest, such as aggressive behaviour - mainly when it’s out of character. This doesn’t necessarily mean violent behaviour (although it can happen), as unusually aggressive language can point towards a change in mental state—another big red flag.

Interested In Being a Seniors Counsellor? Train With OCA!

Counsellors working with the elderly get to enjoy a role with immense job satisfaction, so it's perhaps no surprise that it’s a popular career choice. If you’re considering joining the profession, we're here to tell you that training for the role has never been easier or more convenient thanks to our counselling courses. 

As with every other course in our library, each hour completed counts towards your CPD points and learning is delivered in bite-sized video modules, making it super easy to digest. To know more about this or any of our online training, visit us today at where you’ll find courses covering more than 20 different professional industries.

However, if you’ve got some questions you’d like to answer before enrolling in one of our online training courses, simply call us on 1300 611 404, and we’ll be happy to assist.

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