Antidepressants 'increase falls in older people'

Posted on 18 July 2011

Older people paying for care may be at an elevated risk of falling following a change in antidepressant medication, a study has shown.

Research published online in the Journal of Gerontology: Medical Sciences revealed that care home residents are five times more likely to fall within two days of a new prescription for or an increased dose of a non-selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor antidepressant.

Authors recommended that nursing home staff more closely monitor residents prescribed a change to their antidepressant medication.

Lead author Sarah D Berry, of the Institute of Aging Research, explained: "these drugs are effective at treating the symptoms of depression, and many clinicians are reluctant to withhold their use based solely on a risk for falls."

Meanwhile, Ann Finnemore, hypnotherapist and stress manager, said that exercise could help the mental state of those with depression or anxiety.

The expert explained that the release of endorphins, triggered by exercise, improves the mood of the individual.

Posted by Nigel Murphy

 

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