What It’s Really Like to Get Older
Sep 15, 2016 by Comfort Keepers Myrtle Beach
There is a famous proverb that goes by these words “Old age is a regret”. This proverb perhaps, define the emotional or spiritual aspects of the old age, however, it is not indicative of many other dimensions that one experiences in old age. There is much more to old age than simply regretting the past. It involves both the old age persons and their caregivers alike.
What is it really to get older?
Biologically or anatomically speaking, getting old is the simple reference to advanced years of someone’s life (say beyond 60 years). In more complex terms, it means loads of social, financial, psychological and medical implications with reference to caregiving or home care for senior citizens. Here is a breakdown of each of these dimensions.
- Social impact. Old age generally means retirement and seclusion in most cases. The old person is mostly confined to his or her home premises (in a worst case scenario, to his or or room or bed). Most caregivers are working family members who may be building careers or working hard to make the ends meet. Old age people are usually left with no or little social life and it has deep psychological implications.
- Psychological impact. Senior citizens have a multitude of psychological issues to deal with and it has deep implications for the old person as well as their home caregivers. Dealing with seclusion associated depression, temper tantrums, loneliness and illness related stress can be challenging for the old persons as well as the people around them. It is almost impossible to ensure that senior citizens are not exposed to any kind of psychological stress due to a variety of personal and environmental reasons. Home caregivers can only try and reduce the stress causing elements to the minimum.
- Financial Impact. Most citizens retire from regular work by the age of 65. Their sources of regular and ensured income dries out in most cases and many of them are left to old age benefits, which are meager and usually insufficient to maintain the quality of life senior citizens enjoyed once. It happens in most cases and had deep mental effects, especially once the senior citizens have to depend on a home care with limited budget. In such cases, senior citizens may have to experience a reduced quality of life, limited buying or spending power and the feeling of deprivation and helplessness.
- Medical care Impact. Old age invariably brings in health issues for a variety of reasons. Even the healthiest of the senior citizens require routine medical checks and those with established illness and diseases may require expensive healthcare facilities. In the absence of a subsidized health care plan by the state, even routine medical care can be prohibitively expensive. Specialized healthcare can be out of financial reach for many senior citizens.
- Domestic impact. Senior citizens that are dependent on home care invariably face the dilemma of being relegated from the status of a bread winner to a dependant. The burden for senior citizen home care can be excruciating for caregivers, especially once the household already has many mouths to feed. The feeling of being a “burden” and “uselessness" brings in stress and immobility for senior citizens.
The last word
All these factors set the stage to the feeling of getting old. Only with proper care giving and home care, older people can be made to feel lesser stress and live well in the last days of their lives.