Psychiatrist Questions Depression

With my mother's illnesses, I am becoming extremely depressed. What can I do about this?

I am the sole caretaker for my mother who is suffering from multiple illnesses. Her conditions and the stress associated with them are making me extremely depressed. I am going to have to care for her for the rest of her life. What can I do to help cope with my own depression?

7 Answers

You need verbal therapy to help you sort out what you can and cannot do. You may be clinically depressed and need medications. You may need home health aid supports for your mother
Your depression is caused by feeling hopeless, helpless, overwhelmed. Most likely you are also physically exhausted.
You need some relief. If your mother has health insurance you may ask about home health care or a visiting nurse to help you. Medicare usually covers some of the services. You have to request it.
You should talk with a psychiatrist who also uses medication when appropriate- you may be having a depression being precipitated by this situation.
Therapy, support group and possibly meds.
Do things to care for yourself. Consider talking with a counselor. If your functioning is impaired, consider getting a psychiatric opinion.
So, the caregiver depression and stress and anxiety is very common. Try therapy and see if you need to see a psychiatrist also.

Sincerely,

Sofia Rizwan, MD
I am sorry to learn of your mother's poor health, and empathize with the role of primary caregiver (especially an only caregiver). I highly recommend that you see a licensed mental health professional at your earliest convenience. You did not mention any of your mother's specific illnesses or how gravely ill she is, but most common (and many less common) diseases and conditions have foundations or similar organizations that offer in-person and/or on-line support groups and a wealth of information. If your mother has been admitted to hospice, their professionals are also usually very helpful, as I have learned from several of my patients as well as my own personal experience.