Physiological Changes In Older Adult  

As we age, our bodies undergo physical and physiological changes. Physiological changes in older adults can cause certain health-related problems, which have to be addressed properly by the doctor. Here are some physiological changes that occur in older adults:

Older adults develop fears, some of the common ones being:

  • The horror that with the onset of age, their ability to be actively occupied is severely at risk.
  • That they will experience a gradual but inevitable mental decline.
  • That they will be abandoned by their families.

Such fears arise out of knowing someone in similar circumstances who have had, or are living such experiences. Human nature is such as to focus on the negative. The sight of another wheelchair-bound, or suffering dementia, or paralyzed with a stroke is enough to spawn pessimistic emotions and fears.

It is typical of human nature to club everyone in a particular age bracket together and believe all are equally vulnerable to the same ailments. But in actual fact this is not the case. All individuals are unique and different to each other; older adults are no different. Other than age, there is no similarity between seniors in a particular range of age. Older adults must be encouraged to adapt to changing circumstances as they age, and assume revised priorities.

Mental decline in old age too is vastly maligned. It is true there is some degree of impairment, but in normal aging, decline of mental faculties can be slowed to a great extent by keeping the mind mentally alert with what one might call mental aerobics. Keeping the mind stimulated with challenges staves off degeneration of the mind.

Clinical depression is prevalent in about 2.5 percent of older adults while between 15-20 percent display depressive symptoms. The general root cause can be summarized as:

  • Fear of abandonment
  • Fear of serious illness, including mental illness
  • Fear of losing their independence and being dependant of others for even the most basic of functions.

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