Explanation: "Depression is a medical problem of the brain that can affect how you think, feel, and behave. Signs of depression may include fatigue, a loss of interest in normal activities, poor appetite, and problems with concentration and sleeping. Anxiety is excessive worry. Signs of anxiety can include trembling, muscle aches, problems sleeping, stomach pain, dizziness and irritability."

Why is this important?: "Feeling depressed or anxious can lessen your quality of life and lead to other health problems. Nursing home residents are at a high risk for developing depression and anxiety for many reasons, such as loss of a spouse, family members or friends, chronic pain and illness, difficulty adjusting to the nursing home, and frustration with memory loss. Identifying depression and anxiety can be difficult in elderly patients because the signs may be confused with the normal aging process, a side effect of medication, or the result of a medical condition. Proper treatment may include medication, therapy, or an increase in social support."

 

Taken from the Center for Medicaid and Medicare Services: Nursing Home Information for Consumers

http://www.medicare.gov/nhcompare/include/datasection/quality/qualitymeasuresresults.asp?StyleChoice_Size=0