- List and describe 5 different biological changes the elderly can experience
- Senescence- refers to changes in the normal process of the body over time as a person ages. Some of the parts that these changes affect our hair, skin, and nails. For example, wrinkles in older adults emanate from the loss of fat under the skin.
- Neurological system– it consists of the nervous system and the brain, and they experience biological changes as one ages. For example, the weight of the brain reduces by about 10%, which impedes its operations.
- Cardiovascular system– the blood vessels and heart become less efficient as one age. For example, collagen and fat begin to build in the heart muscles, which reduces its efficiency.
- In the musculoskeletal system-the older people become shorter as they continue to lose muscle strength and mass. Spine compression also occurs among older people, and it leads to diseases, such as arthritis. Bones even lose their integrity due to deterioration and thinning.
- Gastrointestinal system- older adults lose smell and taste as their esophagus becomes less elastic and narrow. This condition can lead to some health problems, such as colon and stomach cancer.
- Choose three theories of aging (why the body ages) and define each
- The wear and tear theory
According to this theory, the body wears naturally at a predetermined time. The process is determined by genes. The wear and theory are based on the view that cells of a living organism have a finite number of divisions. These divisions allow for the replacement of the worn-out cells with new ones. Although the process is influenced by other factors such as life and environmental circumstances, the divisions of cells become minimal as the body of a person continues to age.
- Cross-links and free radicals theory
This theory contends that adverse reactions within the structures of molecules and cells of a body increase as people ages. Cells are likely to develop cross-links among themselves that impair their functioning. The close links form collagen in veins, joints, and skin. Consequently, it reduces the efficiency of these body parts due to the formation of extra protein cells. Free radicals occur as a result of unstable oxygen molecules in the cells of an aging person. The unstable molecules are likely to attach themselves to the protein cells of the body, impairing the functioning of the protein cells, which are vital in the normal working of the body.
- Deterioration of the immune system
According to this theory, the immune system becomes weak and unable to fight illnesses with age. The abnormal cells become unchecked and cause chronic conditions as time goes by. It also impairs the functioning of major systems of the body. This theory also purports that the body may start to reject some of its cells as one age. It may produce antibodies that attack good or healthy cells. This condition causes arthritis and other abnormalities in elderly people.
- Discuss four things a person can do that will contribute to their “Healthy Aging”
- Exercise- engaging in regular exercises, such as jogging and walking, can help the aging to keep their bodies active. It can also help them to lower the chances of some diseases, such as colon cancer, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes, among others.
- Diet-eating balanced diets can strengthen the various biological systems of aging. For example, eating fruits and vegetables are vital in boosting the immune systems of aging.
- Psychosocial support-aging people experience psychological problems such as stress and depression. These problems are caused by isolation and other challenges associated with aging people. Providing aging people with psychosocial backing can assist them to age peacefully as it enhances their ability to thrive amidst the challenges of aging.
- Learning- learning helps people, including the aging ones, to acquire skills that are relevant to living healthy lives. For example, it can help them to acquire skills related to healthy eating and physical exercises.
- Identify and discuss four different examples of Social Theory of Ageing
- Role therapy- it is important to monitor the insight and behaviors of older adults. The life of a person is made up of various roles as one moves from one stage to the other. A person feels satisfied as he or she accomplishes these roles successfully. For example, older men develop a sense of accomplishment as they move from fathers to grandfathers. The level of success in accomplishing these roles can affect aging, either positively or negatively.
- Disengagement- Most older adults isolate themselves from society as they feel the need to make room for younger generations. However, connecting with the elderly is essential since they require social support. Disengagement can cause depression and other psychological problems for the elderly.
- Activity- according to this theory, older adults who maintain reciprocal and active relationships with other people in their environment age successfully. Nevertheless, it does not explain the role of financial and health issues as one age.
- Social constructionism- this theory purports that people behave according to the way they have constructed their lives. For example, the perception of a woman towards becoming a widow can highly determine how she behaves. The attitudes of older adults determine their process of aging.