"Dark Winter" to Spark Second Wave of Isolation for Seniors, According to Experts

Rales JFS Sponsors Free Virtual Presentation Titled "How to Sustain Mental Well-Being for Aging Family Members" Featuring Dr. Susan Lehman, Clinical Director of Geriatric Psychiatry
By: Ruth & Norman Rales JFS
Dr. Susan Lehman
Dr. Susan Lehman
BOCA RATON, Fla. - Nov. 16, 2020 - PRLog -- The Coronavirus pandemic's effect on physical health is obvious: 11 million cases and over 240,000 deaths in the United States alone. But what about the mental health effect? According to psychiatrists, the toll on mental health is escalating exponentially.

A recent KFF tracking poll (https://www.kff.org/coronavirus-covid-19/report/kff-health-tracking-poll-july-2020/) already found among older adults (ages 65 and older), close to half (46%) in July 2020 said that worry and stress related to coronavirus has had a negative impact on their mental health, up from 31% in May 2020. While a Fall 2020 study has not been reported to date, the trends are clear. The question, however, remains – what if anything can we do, as infection rates and deaths are expected to continue to rise this winter.

To help South Floridians and their families cope with this second wave of isolation, Ruth & Norman Rales Jewish Family Services (Rales JFS) announced this week it will present a free Zoom lecture by Dr. Susan Lehman, MD, Clinical Director of Geriatric Psychiatry and Neuropsychiatry and an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

Titled Challenges During COVID-19: How to Sustain Positive Mental Well-Being for Aging Family Members, the live, virtual presentation will take place on December 14, 2020 from 7:00-8:00 pm. According to Rales JFS and Dr. Lehman, the free presentation is specifically designed for families, friends and caregivers of aging loved ones who have been affected physically and mentally by COVID-19.

Specific areas that will be covered will include:

• Mental health challenges of COVID-19 for older adults;
• Effective coping strategies for loneliness, depression, anxiety, and dementia; and
• How to stay socially connected while social distancing.

"In Florida, our senior (65 and older) population represents over 19% of the state's population, which makes us the 'oldest' state in the nation," said Danielle Hartman, President & CEO of Ruth & Norman Rales Jewish Family Services. "As an agency dedicated to the needs of our community, is our mandate to help these individuals and to provide the services, education and resources needed. I truly feel this presentation by Dr. Lehman could not come at a more critical time."

Advanced registration for the "Challenges During COVID-19: How to Sustain Positive Mental Well-Being for Aging Family Members" is required and can be done at the following website: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZMocOihqzsjE92qNejZLDJ9_zh-T2LoBn6R.

About Ruth & Norman Rales Jewish Family Services
Visit www.ralesjfs.org.

Melissa Perlman, BlueIvy Communications
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