September 16, 2022 by Dean Bellefeuille


We all have bad days and good days, and we are all entitled to a bit of crankiness or negative thinking occasionally. If you’re taking care of a loved one who appears to have fallen into a routine of continuous negativity and complaining, however, it’s worth exploring whether a health problem may be the root cause. A physician can help you determine if a loved one’s mood is being affected by common health problems in the elderly.

Listed here are several reasons for recurring negativity and how you can help.

  1. Urinary tract infections (UTIs). A UTI’s classic symptoms of burning, pain, and urgency to urinate may include additional side effects for older adults, including angry outbursts, confusion, irritability, along with other alterations in mood or behavior. Check with the doctor to rule out a urinary tract infection if you notice these kinds of irregular behaviors.
  2. Pain. A recent research study discovered that participants who are experiencing chronic pain reported a rise in negative moods, including anger, depression, anxiety, tension, fatigue, and much more. It’s important to discuss any of these mood changes with the physician, as these types of mood changes actually impact the effectiveness of pain management treatments.
  3. Medication side effects. A wide range of medications – including those meant to help with mood, such as antidepressants – can cause troublesome mood swings. Medications for hypertension, inflammation, and seizures may cause behavioral and personality alterations in some people. Once again, talk with the doctor, and go through each of the older adult’s prescriptions to figure out if the problem stems from one medication or maybe the interaction of multiple medications together.
  4. Dementia. Mood and personality changes are common in dementia. It’s crucial to recognize that these changes are a symptom of the physiological changes in the brain and are not a representation of the person’s own choices and decisions. There are medicinal and natural treatment options that can help the person feel calmer and less agitated that you may desire to explore.

Negativity can arise from boredom or loneliness, too. Whatever the cause, persistent negativity can wear on a caregiver’s own sense of comfort and wellbeing. It’s important to be able to step away from your care role on a regular basis, and to make this time away a top priority. The senior will also benefit from the chance to spend time with a variety of friends, family members, or a professional caregiver. These breaks are a healthy part of your caregiver/care receiver relationship – for both of you.

At Home Independent Living’s caregivers are great companions to help brighten the mood of the older adults we serve. All of our caregiving staff are fully trained, background checked, and accomplished in a wide range of in-home care services for seniors. Email or call us to see exactly how we provide the kind of home care Syracuse, NY, and nearby areas trust most. To learn more about all of the areas we serve in New York, please visit our Service Area page.