There Should Not Be Fear of Aging by: Susana Gallegos

Stereotypes on older adults are typically not question, there is a believe that as one gets older life starts not to be as enjoyable and not as satisfying but the reality is more ambiguous. Being forgetful is a typical stereotype that when one gets older is something typical and there is no reason to worry much about it because is a passage of life. Reality is that when we start getting older our minds are not as fast when young but it does not mean that the memory of an older adult is going to decrease completely.

Ageism is prejudice based on age. Many of the articles that are going to be presented on this paper describes the prejudice that older adults have experience in the United States. Many of the big companies in the United States will not hire older adults because of their age, or if they are hired these older adults are given an “easy” job because of the idea that older adults are nor capable on working hard.disrupt-aging-logo

The mind is a powerful tool that needs to be exercise in order to keep working. Being forgetful is one the stereotypes that many of us believe that older adults experience. Thinking that is normal that an older adult forgets an everyday routine is usually a big mistake because is showing that the older adult might be experience something more serious that it can easily be disregarded when it should not be.

The age stereotype that is in the United States. Many studies done show that people attribute to their health problems blame it on age more than an unhealthy life style lived. Adults may look away from what the real problem can be aging, is just a small factor that can direct their attention away from a problem that could lead to a disease these leading on not looking for medical help early and causing their health to get worse (Nelson, 2015).

Studies on this article made showed that there is an improvement of health if the adults or older adults have a positive view on getting older have a better life expectancy because these older adults have created ways to keep exercising their mind and making changes in their lives to keep them healthy and when reaching an older age they live two to almost five years longer than what is usually expected, believing that the negative stereotype about older adults  goes hand to hand with their physical and mental health (Nelson, 2015).

On the article is discussed that there were two longitudinal studies of age related beliefs on the expectancy of health and the conclusions were that older adults have accepted the negative views about ageing and their health actually decline faster than the older adults that had a positive thinking on aging. On the study locus of controlled believed that individuals believe have a strong correlation on the effects of their life.

Our negative age stereotype affects the younger generation that believes getting older is sad or a hassle but it is not. Educations is the greatest tool given to demonstrate that the real cause of mental health not taking care of self-early on in life. What we do in our life at an early age can affect the outcome late on in life.

The consequences of ageism, how these has been perpetuated and the consequences of ageism. Robison describes ageism as a form of bigotry such as a form of racism and discrimination of older adults, now in days is describe as a prejudice or discrimination against older adults. One of the points that Barrie Robinson discuss was how popular culture has created a perpetuated attitude of ageism his point showed on how birthday cards have created a language to represent or call older adults such as old goat, old fogy, old aid and more (Robinson,1992) .

The negative myths and stereotypes of older adults. The book shows examples of different views such as illness, impotency, ugliness, mental decline and more. The focus on my paper is the mental decline and on his paper the author discusses how is common to think that by getting older the mental ability begins to decline, especially abilities to learn something new and cognitive impairment is inevitable. The truth is that older adults are able to retain normal mental abilities. It is accurate that reaction time slowest down, but studies has shown that keeping the mind active can help exercise the mind and keep it healthier for longer (Palmore,1990).

Getting little forgetful is a normal part of aging, and all through our life we experience forgetfulness but is more pointed out when one is getting older. What is not normal is senility, or dementia, and the causes for these could be malnutrition, depression, dehydration, and the use of drugs; some types of dementia can be reversed but it varies from person to person.  The other type of dementia, and the most severe is Parkinson’s or Alzheimer. On Wilkens research estimates that 4 millions of older adults have Alzheimer’s disease. The risk of developing Alzheimer does increase with age but Alzheimer’s is not a normal stage of becoming an older adult, exercise and well nutrition can decrease the possibility of developing Alzheimer sooner but there still no cure of the disease (Wilkens, 2002).

not-being-afraid

There is a lack of education on younger generations, Jocelyn Angus writes about that on her article Ageism: A threat to “Aging Well” , there is the same believe where we all have been shown by media and the lack of education that aging is scary and is not a stage of life that is desire because no one wants to depend on someone else help to do everyday activities. What Angus discusses is that there is a lack of education in the United States. There have been studies done in other countries as China where older adults have gain the main respect because they are view as a wise population where they can learn from them to keep prospering on their lives. In the United States is not view the same way as China. Companies want “fresh and fast minds.” Older adults are view as they cannot longer be able to learn or perform as good as someone younger than them (Angus, 2016).

In conclusion older adults are not all forgetful or demented nor by getting old one loses the capacity to perform on their jobs. As mention on previous articles the change is on the education that we have received and given back, we have put a fear on getting older where instead of creating that fear there should be an education on how starting healthy living habits at an early stage on our life can have a big impact later on. By continuing challenging ourselves on our life we can reduce some of the effects on getting older and live a more complete way. Stereotypes can be harmful because it limits what an older adult can or cannot do and to change our conceptions about becoming an adult can be beneficial so the stigma does not become a complete reality of how we live the world. Educations is the greatest power that we have in order to show the newer generations.

References

Angus J. (2016). Ageism: A Threat to “Aging Well” in the 21st Century Journal of Applied Gerontology

Nelson T. D. (2015). Promoting Healthy Aging by Confronting Ageism. American Psychologist.

Robinson B. (1992) Ageism and the older adult resources. University of California.

Wilkens Carolyn S.(2002).Myths and Realities of Aging. Florida Cooperative
Extension, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences,University of
Florida. doi: ufdcimages.uflib.ufl.edu/IR/00/00/22/15/00001/FY52400.pdf

Advertisements