ERIC Number: ED189518
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978-Apr-20
Reference Count: 0
The Behavioral Treatment of Depression in Elderly Outpatients.
The behavioral view that depression results from inadequate, ineffective and/or insufficient reinforcers was explored. Since the depressed person does not act in a manner open to positive reinforcement by others, he suffers ongoing and deepening depression. The task of the therapist is to improve behavior, especially social skills, so that the depressed person can obtain greater satisfaction through communication and relationships. Therapist attitude is important in working with the elderly. A case study of therapy with an elderly man illustrates the processes involved in helping the client increase his activity level, reduce dependency and use of medication, and improve communication with his wife. Recommendations for use of a behavioral approach in the treatment of depression in the elderly include: (1) the importance of a clear focus and consistent approach; (2) the necessity of frequent repetition of the connection between adaptive behaviors and depressed feelings to maintain motivation; and (3) the need to set modest goals and anticipate long-term treatment. (NRB)
Publication Type: Reference Materials - Bibliographies; Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Western Psychological Association (58th, San Francisco, CA, April 19-22, 1978).