Older adults who are struggling with low mood, changing emotions, or substance abuse need a helping hand, but their loved ones or peers often do not know what type of support to give. The Lorain County Board of Mental Health (LCBMH), in collaboration with local partners, is offering a free training on September 13 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. to help residents understand and provide relief for depression and other behavioral health concerns in older adults.
“When an older adult says they ‘feel like a burden’ or have low moods and changes in behavior, listen and notice. Elder suicide is real,” says Blanche Dortch, LCBMH Community Services Director and member of the Lorain County Suicide Prevention Coalition and Elder Suicide Prevention Taskforce.
In fact, the highest suicide rate in the U.S. was people 85 years or older, and the second highest rate was for people between 45 and 64 years old, according to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.
The Elder Support Training will give participants the confidence to help when clients or older family members are struggling to stay mentally well.
“As we get older, sometimes we are more isolated, have fewer active friendships, maybe fewer people watching out for us. That’s why it is essential that anyone who works with the elderly, has aging parents or family members, or who is over 65 and worried about their peers, knows how to be supportive and what resources are available,” Dortch says.
The training will be held at Amherst Beaver Creek Park, and is open to people who live or work in Lorain County. The training is presented by the Lorain County Board of Mental Health, the Elderly Suicide Prevention Taskforce of the Suicide Prevention Coalition, the Alcohol and Drug Addiction Services Board of Lorain County, Firelands Counseling and Recovery Services, and ExactCare Pharmacy. Lunch will be sponsored by ClearVista Health and Wellness.
Register at lcbmh.org/event/elder-support-training/.