Wise Wednesdays – Firearms and Seniors – a deadly mix

The highest rate of suicide by age group, is surprisingly, that of folks over 65. Experts believe this high rate is due to an even higher rate of depression associated with loss of a spouse , loneliness and depression associated with disease and disability. many suicides occur as the result of firearms at a concerning rate. In our own experience at Gaitway, this issue of firearms becomes of a much higher concern when cognitive deficits and dementia become an issue. Suspiciousness and paranoia play a role when clients wth cognitive deficits believe that their home is being broken into and feel that their life is at risk, when it is actually their friendly caregiver arriving for the morning. We go out of our way during evaluations to ascertain if firearms are in the home and have family members remove them prior to our arrival for this very reason. If you have a senior in your life that has firearms in their possession – its time for a reasonable conversation on removal. this article from the NYT addresses the issues and discusses some solutions.