Issues of Old Age

As more of the world transitions towards better income and health infrastructure, the average lifespan of an individual has increased. Thus, the elderly will be a more significant portion of our population demographic. We need to combat a lot of the challenges this might pose by changing laws and policies effectively. There are many health conditions associated with growing older; common conditions include hearing loss, visual disability, chronic body pains in certain areas, diabetes, depression, and a myriad of other mental illnesses such as dementia and Parkinson's disease. Along with these, we see the emergence of severe complex health states that only occur later in life. These 'geriatric syndromes' do not fall into discrete disease categories as they occur due to multiple underlying factors. Besides just the health issues one may face as they grow older, there are many other changes one must learn to adapt to. Since they're no longer part of the working force, the elderly have to find ways to keep themselves busy, find a little rhythm in their routine, and feel motivated. There may also be changes related to relocation due to economic changes. All these conditions described above can create all types of problems our legislation and healthcare systems are not adequately equipped to handle. These conditions can cause a severe drop in the productivity and general quality of life of an aging individual. Very often, the elderly cannot take care of themselves without family support or being placed in an elderly home. Although many of the aging factors are related to genetics, a lot of it depends on a person's physical and social environments. Thus, it is critical to develop and maintain healthy behaviors. Small steps such as eating a balanced diet, socializing, physical exercise, and avoiding substances like alcohol and tobacco help improve physical and mental capacity in the long run.