Your Questions about Aging Answered
Although aging is something that happens to everybody, it’s something of a mysterious process for a lot of people. When you add on all the resistance to aging that we often see in our youth-focused culture, you’ve got a recipe for being in the dark. All this means you’ll likely have a lot of questions as you approach your golden years. This can be especially true if you and your family are trying to navigate the senior care industry. Here, we’ve got some helpful questions about aging answered for you.
From timing to exercise and from living situations to driving, we’ve got a wide swath of the aging experience covered here. We tried to put together all the things people usually start out asking when it comes to getting older.
Of course, we couldn’t give you all of the aging questions and answers that you could ever have. These are just some of the most common and basic things most people wonder about. So, if you don’t find the one thing you’re really curious about, don’t worry. There are plenty of other resources we can point you toward to get those questions about aging answered.
Now that the preamble is out of the way, let’s start digging into some vital aging questions and answers.
At what age do I need to start asking questions about aging?
This seems like as good a place as any to start. Perhaps the least helpful answer is that you should be asking questions about aging your whole life. There’s no magic number you hit where all of a sudden aging becomes a concern. It’s literally a life-long process. Setting yourself up for healthy and happy later years can begin as early as you want it to.
Even if there was a certain age when you should start wondering about aging questions and answers, though, it wouldn’t be the same for everyone. Some people are concerned from a relatively young age while others don’t spend a single thought on aging questions and answers until well into their later years. Whenever you feel like you’d like to know more about what the
You’ll probably start asking questions about aging for the first time when someone close to you reaches a point where they’re struggling to live life like they always have. Maybe it’s when they forget where they’re going or when they take a bad fall, but hopefully, it will come a lot sooner. It’s always a good idea to start getting your aging questions and answers earlier rather than later. Arm yourself with all the information you need to do right by your loved ones.
When it comes to memory loss, what is normal aging? Is dementia an inevitable part of aging?
The short answer to these questions about aging is that dementia is definitely not a normal part of aging. People have all kinds of experiences with memory loss as they get older. Some are severe, as in cases of dementia, and others are more mild.
General forgetfulness happens to lots of folks as they age. Changes to the brain as we get older can make it harder to learn new information or skills and easier to occasionally misplace things. You might struggle to find a word from time to time or miss a monthly payment. These are all normal parts of aging for lots of people.
However, signs of dementia are not normal parts of aging. Some of these can look like losing track of the time of year, making an uncharacteristic amount of poor choices, frequently forgetting to pay bills, not being able to find important things around the house, and having difficulty keeping up a conversation.
Aging questions and answers often focus on memory issues because people think they’re definitely going to happen, but that’s not true. However, you should be watching out for the more serious signs we’ve laid out here.
Should older adults exercise? What are appropriate ways to stay active as we age?
Staying active into your twilight years is super important. It can help you maintain good health in a variety of ways. Incorporating physical activity into your regular routine can keep your body in good shape, and it can also have huge benefits to your mental health. It’s fair to put a lot of emphasis on your physical health when you’re wondering about aging questions and answers,
There are lots of good exercises for people who are older. Hitting the gym like you might initially picture when you think of exercise is not possible for a lot of older adults. There are other things you can do to remain active that aren’t as strenuous. Tai Chi is one example. This practice can suit a lot of different needs and can be modified appropriately — you can even participate while sitting if that’s what’s most comfortable for you. It can still have great benefits.
As always, talk to your doctor about what they recommend when it comes to physical fitness. They should have some good places to start.
Will I have to stop driving? How do you know when it’s time to take the keys away?
There’s not a specific age where driving is no longer safe that can be applied to everyone. Lots of people are safe to drive when they’re older, and lots of people aren’t. If you’re worried about your own driving capabilities, you should look into your other transportation options.
Most people are asking this question about aging for someone else, though. It’s one of the more difficult parts of caring for an elderly loved one. Lots of families are looking for the least painful way to stop anyone from getting hurt in a car accident caused by someone who shouldn’t be driving. General aging questions and answers aren’t going to do that for you, though. If you’re noticing reckless driving behavior, getting lost, or small accidents, it might be time to step in.
What is a gerontologist, and when should I contact one?
Here, it’s important to differentiate between gerontology and geriatrics. Even though those words are similar, they’re different fields. A geriatric physician or geriatrician is a medical doctor who has done extra training so that they are specially qualified to work with older adults. A gerontologist is someone who has studied aging and holds an advanced degree in the field of gerontology.
Some people won’t consult a gerontologist at all, but they can be a helpful resource if you or a loved one are starting to reach an age when difficult questions about aging are coming up. They are the best experts in the field for you to consult on a lot of the things we’re touching on in this piece. If you’re interested in more personalized aging questions and answers where all the information is tailored specifically to your situation, then you would likely benefit from making an appointment with a gerontologist.
There are lots of questions about aging that come up that leave us feeling way out of our depth. You don’t have to do this alone — reaching out for help from the right professionals can make everything a lot easier. It’s literally their job. Lots of people hesitate at first, but the longer you put it off, the more help you’ll need.
How does a geriatric care manager fit into all this?
A related profession to the two we talked about above is that of geriatric care managers. Typically, these are social workers or nurses who focus on geriatrics. Their job is to put you in touch with the right resources as well as help the family get on the same page when it comes to important care decisions — as far as questions about aging go, they have a lot of the answers.
Sometimes, talking with the rest of the interested parties can bring up a lot of emotions when it comes to how best to help an aging loved one. These professionals can serve as a mediator and a neutral expert in the room. They’ll help steer the conversation in productive directions.
This is all to say that there are plenty of experts that can help you navigate all the difficult aging questions and answers that might arise for you or a loved one over time.
How do I make sure my wishes are known? What kinds of arrangements, decisions, etc., do I need to make?
These questions about aging can be tough to ask. Most people do not like to think about making their end-of-life plans, and probably even fewer people want to ask their loved ones about them. However, making sure everyone’s plans are clearly thought through and communicated to the invested parties.
You can (and should) have open and honest conversations about these topics with your loved ones, your doctor, and your lawyer. Opening the discussion with aging questions and answers can be a good place to start. However, it’s also important to get everything in writing and make sure everyone who needs to access your important documents knows where they are. Also get in touch with your doctor, bank, insurance, and other important institutions to give permission for a trusted loved one or caregiver to speak with them about you and your information or access your accounts if necessary.
Questions about aging like this usually also include wills and trusts. These are documents you should discuss with a legal expert, and there are other legal designations you should have in place, too. Contact a lawyer to get all your legal aging questions and answers specific to your situation.
What are the benefits of aging in place? How do you decide the best place for your elderly loved one?
Prioritizing aging in place has been becoming more popular over recent years, and for good reason. Keeping seniors in familiar environments is a good way to make them feel more comfortable. This can be especially true for anyone requiring memory care. They might feel isolated from their community if they have to move, so keeping them around their friends and family can help their mental health.
As for the best location for seniors, it’s one of the toughest questions about aging. It definitely doesn’t have a one-size-fits-all answer. All of the benefits of aging in place that we just listed are true, but not all families and situations can make that happen. Sometimes your loved one needs to be in a residential facility to make sure they are safe and well cared for. Consulting with the professionals we’ve listed thus far is a good place to start that decision process. Also try to take your loved one’s wishes into account — they probably have lots of aging questions and answers for you, too. It’s true that people rarely recognize when it’s time to leave their home, but if you try to make it work for as long as is feasible, you should be able to make them feel heard and respected.
Get your questions about aging answered.
Those were all of our most general and basic aging questions and answers. If you need other questions about aging answered, whether it’s for yourself or for a loved one, you should also have the resources to go about that. We’ve directed you toward lots of different professionals in the field.
Aging questions and answers are super common and will only become more important as the population ages. We couldn’t possibly anticipate all of them or give you all the answers you need. If you’re interested in learning more about in-home care to let your elderly loved one stay in their home for as long as possible, don’t hesitate to reach out to us here at Seniors Home Care. Our team of experts can help you find the right solution for your family’s needs. You can learn more about what we do on the rest of our website and contact us when you feel ready or if you have further questions about aging or anything else. We look forward to hearing from you.
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