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Late Adulthood

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Betty Pierre

on 9 April 2014

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Transcript of Late Adulthood

Chapter 23: Biosocial Development
Chapter 23: Biosocial Development Cont'd
Chapter 24: Cognitive Development
Chapters 23-25
Late Adulthood

Brianna Holiday, Felicia Barnard, Betty Pierre, Schelomith Lucien
Chapter 25: Psychosocial Development pt. 1
Chapter 25: Psychosocial Development pt. 2
Prejudice and Predictions
• Prejudice about late adulthood is common among people of all ages.
• Ageism is the idea that age determines who you are. Ageism can target people of any age.
• Ageism is not considered as harmful as racism or sexism.

Believing the stereotype

The Elderly’s View on Ageism

– Most people over the age of 70 think they are doing better than people their age. They refer to a “senior moment”, not realizing the ageism inherent in that phrase.
– Stereotype threat can be as debilitating for the aged as for other groups .

Believing the stereotype

Ageism Leading to Disease
– Ageism could prevent the depressed elderly from getting the help they need.
– Elderly European American men have the highest suicide rate of any age ,gender , or ethnic group .
– Many health professionals are not eager in treating the elderly, even researchers enroll less of the elderly in their trials.
– The elderly themselves exercise less and their inaction increases stiffness; reduces rage of motion, and slows down circulation , digestion, and the brain.

Believing the stereotype

– People tend to infantilize the elderly ,acting as if they are children, not adults. One example of that’s is Elderspeak or baby talk.
– Elderspeak uses simple and short sentences , exaggerated emphasis ,slower speech ,higher and louder pitch, and frequent repetition.

Gerontology and Geriatrics
– Gerontology is the multidisciplinary study of old age.
– Geriatrics is the traditional medical specialty devoted to aging.

The Demographic Shift

is the science that describes populations , including specific groups such as those of particular age, gender, or region.
• Demographers describe a demographic shift as a shift in the proportions of the populations of various ages.

The Demographic shift
• A demographic Pyramid is a graphic representation of population as a series of stacked bars in which each age cohort is represented by one bar, with the youngest cohort at the bottom

The Demographic Shift

Old , Older , Oldest

The Young Old (60-75)
make up the largest group of older adults . They are healthy active , financially secure, and independent .

The Old Old (75-85
)- suffer from some reductions in physical or mental ability or in social support, but can still care for themselves,

The Oldest-Old (85-100)
are infirm, at risk for illness and injury.

Primary and Secondary Aging

Primary Aging
are universal changes that occur with the passage of time

Secondary Aging
is the consequence of particular diseases, chosen habits and controllable environmental conditions

Primary and Secondary Aging

High Blood pressure and Cardiovascular Diseases

Cardiovascular disease
is a disease that involves the heart and circulatory system

Cardiovascular disease
is secondary aging because it is not universal and is more risk related than age-related

Selective Optimization with Compensation

Individual Compensation
: Sleep
– Older adults spend more time in bed, take a longer time to fall asleep ,wake up more often, feel drowsy in the daytime more frequently , and, because of all this ,are more distressed by their sleep patterns than younger adults are.
– The day –night circadian rhythm is less pronounced in the elderly than in the young, which means that many older people wake up before dawn and nap in the day time.

Selective Optimization with Compensation

Social Comparison
: Driving
– The elderly drive more slowly , many do not drive at night or when it is raining , and some licensed drivers have quit driving .
– As a result elderly drivers have fewer accidents than do younger adults, even though their sign-reading takes longer head-turning is reduced ,reaction time is slower ,and night vision is worst.

Compression of Morbidity

Compression of Morbidity
is a shortening of the time a person spends ill or infirm accomplished by postponing illness.
• Compression of morbidity is a social and psychological blessing as ell as personal , biological one.

Compression of Morbidity

The Effects of Falling

– With age , the bones become more porous , losing calcium and strength .This is a gradual process , more evident in women than men. When this process is far advanced it leads to condition called osteoporosis.
– A fall in late adulthood that causes a broken hip may also ultimately require hip replacement , hospitalization, and immobility.

Compression of Morbidity

The Senses
– For many of the elderly , the most troubling part of senescence is the lost of sensory ability . Much of social interaction depends on quick and accurate sensory responses ,yet all the senses become slower and less sharp with each decade
– This is true for for touch, taste , smell, and even pain, as well as the critical senses of of sight and hearing.

Theories of Aging

Wear and Tear
• It is a view of aging as a process by which the human body wears out because of the passage of time and exposure to environmental stressors.

Genetic Adaption
– Humans may have a kind of genetic clock , a mechanism in the DNA of cells that regulates the aging process by triggering hormonal changes and controlling cellular reproduction and repair.

How long can humans live?
– Maximum life span is the oldest possible age that members of a species can live under ideal circumstances. For humans that age is is approximately 122 years.
– Average life expectancy is the number of years the average newborn in a particular population group is likely to live.
• The average life is 76 for men and 81 for women in the United states.

Chapter 24

Late Adulthood: Cognitive Development

Senescence reduces production of neurotransmitters that allow a nerve impulse to jump quickly across the synapse from one neuron to another.

If the cognitive reserve is depleted, the person is less open to new experiences.

The Aging Brain

Older adults use more of their brains to solve problems.
Possibly due to:
• Compensation:
Using one brain region is inadequate for complex thinking, so older adults automatically use more parts.
Intellectual output may be unimpaired, even though the process of thinking has changed.
Reduced brain reserves
Insufficient reserves may make challenging tasks too hard.
Wandering minds
Brain stops using a focused region for each function, inhibition fails, attention wanders, and thinking becomes diffuse.

Using more of the brain

Some information never reaches sensory memory in older people because the senses never detect the stimuli.
Most older people believe they see and hear whatever is important but vital information may be distorted or lost without the person realizing it.

The Usual Information Processing after 65


Health is measured by mortality, morbidity, disability and vitality.
Studies show that training can improve any cognitive ability, even for the very old.

Health and Well-Being

Cognitive Diseases

: Eat fruits and vegetables daily.
: Exercise for at least three (3x) times a week for 30 minutes.
: Drink at least 8 glasses of water a day.
: Enjoy the sunlight for 20 minutes to 30 minutes a day.
: Be temperate in all things.
: Get at least 20 minutes of fresh air a day.

: Get at least 8 to 9 hours a sleep a night.
: Trust in the LORD with all your heart.

Prevention and Treatment

With Age… Comes Wisdom

Cognitive Diseases
Cellular Aging

Oxygen free radicals
are atoms of oxygen that as a result of metabolic processes, have an unpaired electron. These Atoms scrambled DNA molecules or mitochondria producing errors in cell maintenance and repair that over time may cause cancer diabetes and arteriosclerosis.
• Antioxidants are chemical compounds that bind with electrons of oxygen free radicals , might reduce oxygen free radicals , slow cell aging and extend life

Cellular Aging

The immune System

B cells
are immune cells manufactured in the bone marrow that create antibodies for isolating and destroying bacteria and viruses that invade the body.

T cells
are immune cells manufactured in the thymus gland that produce substances that attack infected cells In the body.

Replication No More

Hayflick limit
is the the number of times a human cell is capable of dividing into two new cells . The limit for most human cells is 50.

is the ends of chromosomes in the cell their length decreases with each cell duplication and seems to correlate with longevity.

is an enzyme that increases the length of telomeres, which in turn may slow advance of aging.

The Centenarians
• Other Places , Other Stories

Tips to live to 100

–people who ate mostly fresh vegetables and Herbs , with little meat or fat.

-Even the old do farm work , household work, and childcare

Family and Communication
- The elderly are well integrated into families of several generations and interact frequently with friends and neighbors

Exercise and Relaxation
- Most take a walk every morning and evening , nap and socialize in the evening .

Self Theories
-Theories of late adulthood that emphasize the core self, or the search to maintain one’s integrity and identity.
Integrity versus despair
-The final stage of Erik Erikson’s developmental sequence, in which older adults seek to integrate their unique experiences with their vision of community.
Theories of Late Adulthood
Self Theories
Holding on to one's Self
-Most older people feel their personalities and attitudes have remained stable over their life span, even as they recognize the physical changes of their bodies.
-Objects and places become more precious, as a way to hold on to identity.
Compulsive hoarding
-The tendency to cling to familiar places and possessions, sometimes to the point of becoming a health or safety hazard.
Self Theories
The Positivity Effect
Selective optimization with compensation
-individuals set their personal goals, assess their own abilities, and figure out how to accomplish what they was to achieve despite limitations.
-elderly people tend to remember positive experiences than negative ones.
-Selective memory is a way to compensate for whatever troubles occur.
Nelson Mandela
Research Study
Self Theories
Self Theories in elderly people conclude that self acceptance leads to happiness
Stratification Theories
Stratification by Age
-Industrialized nations segregate elderly people, gradually shunting them out of the mainstream of society as they grow older.
-Segregation by age harms everyone because it creates
socialization deficits
for members of all age groups.
-socialization deficits-lack of needed social experience
Stratification by Age
Disengagement theory
-The view that aging makes a person’s social sphere increasingly narrow, resulting in role relinquishment, withdrawal, and passivity.
Activity theory
-The view that elderly people want and need to remain active in a variety of social spheres—with relatives, friends, and community groups—and become withdrawn only unwillingly, as a result of ageism.
Stratification by Gender and Ethnicity
-Feminist theory draws attention to society’s guides and pressures to put males and females on different paths.
-Irrational, gender-based fear may limit women’s independence (i.e., older women persuaded not to live alone more than older men).
-Men seek medical help less than women.
-Stratification theory says that factors such as education, health, employment, and place of residence create large discrepancies in income by old age.
-Weathering, past stresses and medical disabilities, creates a high allostatic load which is an accumulation of problems that make a person vulnerable to serious disease.
Work and Retirement
-The activities of older people are intense and varied.
-The psychological benefits of work can be obtained through volunteer work.
-Work provides social support and status, boosting self-esteem.
For many people, employment allows generativity.
-Besides needing the money, some employees over age 65 stay on the job because they appreciate the social recognition and self-fulfillment of work.
-It was once believed that older adults were healthier and happier when they were employed than when they were unemployed and that retirement led to illness and death.
-Only when retirement is precipitated by poor health or fading competence does it correlate with illness.
Theories that emphasize that social forces, particularly those related to a person’s social stratum, or social category, limit individual choices and affect a person’s ability to function in late adulthood as past stratification continues to limit life in various ways.
Home Sweet Home
-One of the favorite activities of many retirees is caring for their own homes.
Aging in place
-Remaining in the same home and community in later life, adjusting but not leaving when health fades.
Naturally occurring retirement community (NORC)
-A neighborhood or apartment complex whose population is mostly retired people who moved to the location as younger adults and never left.
-An important reason for both aging in place and NORCs is the social convoy, the result of years of close relationships.
What purpose do they serve?
Bonds --> Triumphs and tragedies w/ people who understand

Friends and Relatives

Married VS Unmarried
(Healthier, Wealthier, Happier)
1/6 of married not part of statistic
Conflict resolved through discussion NOT fighting
Interdependency increases
Sex will always be important

Long-Term Relationships

Beanpole family
– multiple generations, few members
Intergenerational relationships
becoming more important
Possible conflict resulting from never- ending parenting
– the older you get, the more family means something

Relationships with Younger Generation

Filial Responsibility
– the
of adult children to care for their aging parents

Who do you think believes in the belief of Filial responsibility more? And Why?

“Adults of all ages like to be needed, not needy.”

Conflict in close relationships vs distant ones

Let’s talk about it!!!!!

Tensions Between Older and Younger Adults

85% of US elders (65+) are grandparents
Good relationship between elderly parents and their grown children increases likelihood of a good relationship between grandparents and grandchildren.


Relationship to Grandchild

1. Remote Grandparents

2. Companionate Grandparents

3. Involved Grandparents

4. Surrogate parents

Grandparent Type

4% never married
Gay/Lesbian partnerships
Well-being of never married = happily married
Older adults need at least one close companion.
“Successful aging requires that people not be socially isolated.”
“Many people do not realize the importance of social relationships until they are gone.”


Any questions on Friends and Relatives?

Frail Elderly
– those who are infirm, very ill, or cognitively impaired
Usually the oldest old
Indicator : inability to perform
Activities of Daily life
: eat, bathe, toilet, dress, move
Instrumental activities of daily life
: require intellectual competence and forethought

The Frail Elderly

Caregiver usually spouse, sibling or adult daughter, nursing home
Potential problems
-Caregiver exhaustion
-Elder abuse

Developmentalists advocate more help for families caring for frail elders.

Caring for the Frail Elderly

Likely if
-Caregiver + emotional problems or substance abuse
-Isolated place + visitors are few
Overmedication, locked doors, physical restraints

Elder Abuse

Abuse is now rare in nursing homes

Training and workload of staff is crucial

Quality care is labor-intensive and expensive

Fewer nursing-home residents over the past 20 years.

Long -Term Care

Assisted living
– a living arrangement for elderly people that combines privacy and independence with medical supervision.

Alternative Care

Some elderly people become frail where they cant perform _ _ _ s or _ _ _ _s. A family member or spouse can provide full-time care for elderly. Both the elderly and _________ and undergo abuse. Other than a spouse and family member, other provisions for elder care include ____-____ settings and ____ ____.

Long Story Short

Some elderly people become frail where they cant perform _ _ _ s or _ _ _ _s. A family member or spouse can provide full-time care for elderly. Both the elderly and _________ and undergo abuse. Other than a spouse and family member, other provisions for elder care include ____-____ settings and ____ ____.

Long Story Short

A. Raises grandchildren because parents can not or will not
B. Emotionally distant . Are honored, respected, and obeyed; distant grandparents
C. Active in day-to-day lives of grandchildren; live nearby
D. Entertain and “spoil” their grandchildren

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