Geriatric Psychology Services Gainesville - Ocala
All rights reserved Clinical Psychology Associates of North Central Florida CPANCF.COM (352) 336-2888
Geriatric Psychology is a specialty area within Clinical Psychology devoted to meeting the psychological assessment and treatment needs of older adults. Psychologists working with seniors are trained to recognize potential causes of psychological difficulties in older adults and to provide effective treatment in order to improve the individuals quality of life. Psychologists are also skilled in providing assistance in helping individuals to cope with loss.
Older adults sometimes find themselves dealing with medical illness, physical limitation, and/or social loss not encountered earlier in life. Therefore, psychological problems of this age group most often involve depression, anxiety, and adjustment disorders. Sometimes these difficulties develop as a natural reaction to losses or limitations. However, depression and anxiety can also be associated with medical illnesses, such as heart disease or diabetes, or can occur as a side effect of medication.
Many older adults see a psychologist when referred by their physician, who has detected symptoms of psychological difficulties. Often, psychologists work together with the physician to determine the best course of treatment. Sometimes, symptoms of depression and anxiety can mimic physical illness. For example, depression often presents as excessive fatigue and feelings of malaise in the older adult. Thus, once comprehensive medical evaluation has ruled out medical illness, adequate treatment of anxiety and depression can often reduce the number of additional visits to the doctors office and may prevent unnecessary medical procedures.
Sometimes a neuropsychologist may be asked to perform a neuropsychological evaluation to assess whether memory or other problems in functioning may be due to dementia. Dementia may be due to Alzheimer's but can also be due to cerebrovascular factors, Lewy Body Disease, small or large strokes, and other conditions. Neuropyschologists also may assist in conducting evaluations or interventions for frontal-subcortical dementia's such as Parkinson's Disease.
Sometimes psychological difficulties can have an impact on others around the older individual, such as their spouse, thus creating the need to include others, e.g. family members, in the older adults treatment. This is especially true when the condition faced by the individual is progressive, such as in the case of Alzheimers Disease. Effective psychological interventions with older people, their families, and their health care providers can greatly improve an individuals quality of life.
Please call (352) 336-2888 for information about this or any of our programs. We are dedicated to providing quality psychological assessment, consultation, & treatment services to the North Central Florida Community. We have office in Gainesville and Ocala.