Introduction: Ageing is a natural process. The world is rapidly aging, the number of people aged 60 and over as a proportion of the global population will double from 11% in 2006 to 22% by 2050 and the absolute population increase is expected to be from 605 million to 2000 million. Of this, 80% people will be living in low- and middle-income countries. Late-life depression is a major mental health problem that challenges clinicians and will remain so as the population grows older than 65. Late-life depression contributes to adverse functional, social, and medical outcomes, and can interfere with treatment for medical problems such as stroke.
Methodology: Survey of secondary literature is the prime methodology for preparing this research article.
Research Findings: Mental and behavioural disorders are estimated to account for 12% of the global burden of disease which affects approximately 450 million people. However, most countries allocate less than 1% of their total health expenditures to mental health budgets. It is estimated that depression affects approximately 350 million people worldwide.
Conclusion: An effective approach to this treatable disorder includes recognition of risk factors, detection, and assessment. The Geriatric Depression Scale and the Cornell Scale for Depression in Dementia can assist in diagnosis, while both psychotherapy and pharmacotherapy are options for management. When psychotherapies are compared, the strongest evidence for effectiveness has been found for cognitive behavioural therapy, problem-solving therapy, and interpersonal therapy. When pharmacotherapies are compared, efficacy is similar for different classes of antidepressants and adjuvant medications, but side effect profiles differ and must be considered to avoid adverse events. Patients with severe clinical features of late-life depression, including suicidal ideation and psychosis, should be referred to mental health services.