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Aging Case

Essay by   •  February 19, 2013  •  Essay  •  1,392 Words (6 Pages)  •  835 Views

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Aging happens from the moment we are born. The aging process happens during a person's lifetime. It is not something we can escape from. "Normal aging is an on-going and collective process of change happening throughout a person's life." ("Area Agency on Aging") It is affected by many determinants, such as the environment and genetics. The aging process also brings changes to social and emotional states and loss into our lives. The changes of aging an individual experiences are not necessarily harmful to that person. With aging, hair turns gray; wrinkles develop all around the body, and skin starts thinning, becoming less elastic and sags. Scientists have theories that aging most likely results from a combination of many determinants. Lifestyle, disease, and genes can all affect the rates of aging. Studies have shown that people age differently and at different rates. "Changes include eyesight, hearing, taste, touch and smell, arteries, bladder, body fat, bones, brain, heart, kidneys, lungs, metabolism, muscles, skin, and sexual health." ("Area Agency on Aging") The physical aging process can be influenced in multiple ways. The amount of the changes that take place over the years can be very affective by exercise levels and other behaviors. People who live in certain areas with specifically long life expectancy have characteristics, other than hereditary or genetic effects, such as dietary and nutritional factors, moderate consumption of alcohol, physical activity throughout life, sexual activity continues in later years, social involvement, and physical environment.

Normal aging is not a disease but involves awareness to diseases. It is not a disease because unlike disease, aging is a normal stage of life that seems to be built in. It makes us more accessible to disease but is not itself pathology. It is vital to comprehend the process so we are not confused with a disease. No one dies because a person's hair turns gray. The disease often affiliated with old age can happen even apart from aging. Aging and dying are inter-related but age is not listed as a measured cause of death. Just because a person is old does not mean they are incapable of being productive, impaired, or disabled. Age is not a disability nor is it a cause of death. It is not an inherent indicator much of anything. If aging is seen as a disease, it changes how we respond to it. We would think that it becomes a doctor's duty to treat it. There were would be drugs on the market that treat aging.

It is important to grasp onto the fact that not all old people are the same. There is a great range in the elderly population. Diversity in socioeconomic status, age, level of education, level of physical and psychological functioning, living arrangements, ethnicity, and life experience have great impact on the types of services, programs, and activities for older adults. Gender, ethnicity, and living arrangements have also been shown to impact significantly on physical, psychological, and social habits and capabilities. This diversity greatly influences how successfully a person ages. Compared to men, women have a higher life expectancy and lower death rates. Women report poorer health and more disabilities and they report more mental health problems. Socioeconomic status and health effects on health related to accumulated advantage or disadvantage over time. Occupation, income, property, and education are all factors that influence the socioeconomic status. Health behaviors are also shaped by socioeconomic status; those with lower income and education often engage in more risky health behaviors, such as smoking, poor diet, lack of exercise, or high alcohol consumption. It is important to note that health behaviors alone do not fully explain socioeconomic status disparities in health, so there is more to this gap in health than just these behaviors. Chronic stressors involving financial, marital, and family-related stress are more common for those with lower levels of education and income. Environmental and social stressors can "get under the skin" and disrupt our physiology, which is contributing to poorer health. Socioeconomic status often conceptualized in terms of income and education, but income and education do not cause good health. Poverty related to poor nutrition and substandard housing, exposure to pollutants and violent behaviors that all compromise or endanger health are associated with a range of environmental and lifestyle factors that lead to poor health. For example, those with lower incomes are often more likely to be employed in jobs that are hazardous to their health, including experiencing a lack of safety or security at work, and perhaps even at home. Poverty often places people in substandard housing that may have environmental hazards. Better-educated and wealthier people have healthier diets. They exercise more and are less likely to become overweight, less likely to smoke, and tend to use alcohol in moderation. They



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