Mental Health and the Elderly. Hall, Beverly A. (ed). New York, Gruñe & Stratton, Ine, 1984, 328 pages, hardcover, $29.50.
The elderly comprise an increasingly large proportion of the case loads of nurse practitioners and clinical specialists. Elders experience numerous health problems. Caregivers need to be aware of both the physical and mental needs of their patients and the exquisite interrelationship between the two. The lack of knowledge and understanding of the unique needs and problems of the elderly is both challenging and frustrating for caregi vers.
Dr. Hall and her contributing authors, all specialists in gerontology, believe that the last phase of life has the potential to be as rich and fulfilling as earlier phases. This book contains a wealth of valuable and practical information on such topics as psychosocial adjustment, sexuality and aging, communication, psychosocial and mental health problems, sensory changes, and aging and death.
The authors emphasize the worth of individuals and their need to be treated with dignity and respect. The relationship between elders and their families is discussed, as well as the roles that each assume in facing the various aspects of aging.
Individuals who work with the elderly and serious students of gerontology will find Mental Health and the Elderly an excellent resource. In order to provide holistic care to the elderly, practitioners must treat both mind and body.