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OLD AGE

Ms. S. Malarmathi
Lecturer/Clinical Psychologist
Dept. Of Psychiatry
FMMCH, Mangalore

The criteria for old age various from 60 to 65

In US its 65

In Europe its 60 for men and 55 for women

Physical change

Hair whitens
Skin dries and wrinkles
Loose teeth
Facial configuration shifts
The spine bows
Sensory capacity declines ( impaired hearing,
poor eyesight)
Subtle effects on ANS

COGNATIVE DEVELOPMENT

Cognitive task old age people regress


cognitively

Learning and memory


Learn by classical and instrumental learning
Have difficulty to learn because of poor eyesight,
hearing and sensory impairment.
Over caution and pacing problems
Difficulty in encoding and retrieval

Life Span research on Intelligence


test performance
1. True intelligence declines before the late fifties
are unusual
2. Decline of ability is obvious in speed and
response
3. Above 80 decline is rule rather than exception
4. Big generational differences exist in the
approaches

Creativity in old age


Some people do become creative at old age
a time when the ideas and skills developed over
most of a life time can be brought together to
produce major new achievements.

DEVELOPMENT TASK IN OLD AGE


Eriksons developmental conflict
Integrity vs despair
Integrity means to integrate ones attitudes,
beliefs, motives and experience in such a way
that they fit together comfortably and form a
coherent whole

Without this people feels a growing sense of


despair.
Fear that time is running out

Wisdom
Those who achieve a sense of wholeness and
integrity may develop wisdom
People look towards them for suggestions and
advice

Such people have a balanced investment in self


as well as in others

RETIREMENT
Mark of old age
For some it is loss of a familiar daily routine,
loss of well established role, loss of income etc
For many others its a welcome transitions, one
that offers new opportunities and freedom

The response depends on two factors


Job satisfaction
Income
Scheduled and unscheduled

GRAND PARENTHOOD
Delight is grand children
Culture variation is present

WIDOWS AND WIDOWERS


Coping with loss
Women live longer, hence the surviving partner
is usually female
Ratio is 4:1
Women seems to cope better than men

Status does has an impact on women adjustment


Women who have advance warning adjust well
with the loss
Remarriage is common in western county
companionship

FACING MORTALITY AND DEATH


The awareness grows gradually and they adjust
to the situation.
Psychology of dying kubler ross
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.

Denial
Anger
Bargaining
Depression
Acceptance

ADJUSTMENT PROBLEMS
every man desires to live long, but no man
wants to be old
Retirement bring financial instability and
dependency where old age people have to exist
in substandard housing and sub standard diet

Adjustment to medical condition Alzheimers


Senile brain disorder
Depression

THANK YOU