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Oldies but Goodies: What Therapists Need to Know about Aging

Live Interactive Webinar - REGISTRATION CLOSED

November 3, 2023

Other seminar info: 

6 CE hours- 9:00 am - 4:15 pm ET

 Live Interactive Webinar  


Seminar Description

People are living longer than ever before in human history.  Life expectancy from birth in the USA reached a high of 79 years in 2020, though it has dropped somewhat due to the COVID pandemic.  The proportion of people 65 and older in the population has reached 16%.  The oldest old, defined typically as 85 and older, is growing faster than the rest of the population.  Despite these increases, most academic mental health programs do not address aging except in a cursory manner and the number of trained clinicians is not adequate to meet needs in many communities.  In part, that lack of interest is due to mistaken assumptions that older people are not interesting and cannot benefit from treatment. 

The goal of this presentation is to provide clinicians with a foundation for understanding changes that are associated aging, how to identify problems that are found in the older population, and how to provide effective treatment.  Dr Zarit and Dr Zarit emphasize practical strategies that have been developed in clinical settings. Even when working with people who have chronic conditions, they find there are often treatable aspects of the situation which help them functioning better.


Participants will be able to

  • Differentiate normal aging from mental disorders
  • Take a detailed history from an older patient
  • Use mental status testing in an initial assessment
  • Recognize and treat depression and anxiety in an older person
  • Identify the different types of dementia.
  • Describe the benefits and limitation of various dementia treatments
  • Describe ways to work with caregivers
  • List keys to successful aging


Aging of America and the Role of Psychotherapists

  • What is normal aging?
  • How depression and anxiety can look different in older patients

The Heart of Gero-psychology: Differential Diagnosis

·    Taking a lifespan history

  • Developing alliances with physicians
  • A critical look at mental status exams   

Gero-psychologist’s Tools for Effective Treatment

  • Establishing a healthy therapeutic alliance—
  • Determining reasonable treatment goals—
  • Integrating health issues into treatment

Treating Anxiety & Depression

·    Treatment works!

  • Outcome studies
  • Five components of treatment with depressed people
  • Addressing anxiety symptoms

What are the characteristics of Dementia, Mild Cognitive Impairment, and Delirium

  • Recognizing the main types of dementia
  • What is MCI?
  • How is delirium different from dementia

Treatment and prevention of dementia

  • Medication
  • Cognitive and behavioral
  • Lifestyle changes

And Now for the Fun: Working with Families

  • Providing information and support to a caregiving spouse
  • Coaching children in dealing with their aging parents

Keys to successful aging for you and your clients

  • Accepting and planning for the changes that come with aging
  • Stay healthy, active, and connected