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100 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
boundaries of middle age changing
Middle age is starting later and lasting longer

Boundaries of middle age are being pushed upward
More people lead healthier lifestyles; medical discoveries are holding off the aging process
Middle age is starting later and lasting longer

An increasing percentage of the population is made up of middle-aged and older adults
“Rectangularization” of the age distribution
Health advances, low fertility, aging baby-boom
Rectangularization of the population
The % of the population of people at different ages in the life span are smililar

we went from a pyramid where the biggest part of the population was during childhood. Now its about even throughout the lifespan
Reason for rectangularization of the population
Improved health, sanitation, longevity
Low fertility and voluntarily having less kids
Baby boomers are getting older
Middle adulthood
ages 40-65

Declining physical ability
Increased responsibility
Awareness of young/Old polarity
Transmitting something meaningful to next gen
Reaching and maintaining career satisfaction
Reassessment of life's priorities
Middle adulthood
Gains and Growth
Gains/Growth and Losses/decline Balance
Late Midlife
55-65 years
Usually characterized as:
Death of a parent
Last child leaving home
Becoming a grandparent
Prep for and actual retirement
Middle adulthood
visbile signs and appearance
Usually gradual; rates of aging vary
Wrinkling and sagging of skin
Appearance of aging spots
Hair becomes thinner and grayer
Nails become thicker and more brittle
Yellowing of teeth
Middle adulthood
Height and Weight
Height tends to shrink in middle age, due to bone loss in the vertebrae

Many gain weight, which is a critical health problem in middle adulthood
Middle adulthood
Strength and Bones
Sarcopenia: age-related loss of muscle mass and strength

Especially common in the back and legs
Exercise can reduce these declines

Cushions for bone movement become less efficient, often leading to joint stiffness and more difficulty in movement
Progressive bone loss
Age related loss of muscle mass and strength
Accomodation of the eye
Ability to focus and maintain an image

Sharply declines between ages 40-59

Difficulty viewing close objects
Middle adulthood
Accomodation of the eye-ability to focus and maintian an image
sharply declines 40-59

Difficulty viewing close objects
Middle adulthood
can start to decline at 40

Hearing loss occurs in up to 50% of people over age 50

High pitch sounds go first
Middle adulthood
Cardiovascular system
High Bp,
high cholesterol
cardiovascular disease
Middle adulthood:
Blood pressure
Typically rises in 40's and 50's

At menopause, a woman’s blood pressure rises sharply, remaining higher than that of men into the later years
Metabolic Syndrome
a condition characterized by hypertension, obesity, and insulin resistance
Reduction of cardiovascular problems
Exercise, weight control, and a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains
Middle adulthood
Lung tissue becomes less elastic at about age 55
Decreases lung’s capacity
Nonsmokers have much better lung capacity
Middle adulthood
Wakeful periods become more frequent in the 40’s
Less deep sleep (stage 4)
Feeling less rested in the morning
Chronic disorders
disorder with a slow onset and a long duration
Men have a higher incidence of
Fatal Chronic Disorders:
CAD Coronary Artery Disease
Women have a higher incidence of
Non-Fatal chronic disorders:
Vericose veins
middle adulthood
accidents and cold's and allergies
Frequency of accidents declines

Individuals are less susceptible to colds and allergies
Middle adulthood
Main cause of death
Chronic diseases:

Heart Disease/Cardiovascular Disease
Men have higher mortality rates than women
the midlife transition in which fertility declines
time in middle age (late 40’s to early 50’s) when a woman’s menstrual periods completely cease
transitional period; often takes up to 10 years
Side effects such as hot flashes, fatigue, nausea
Experience of symptoms is widely varied
Women's typical reaction to menopause
Cross-cultural studies show that the menopausal experience varies among women, but it is not generally as negative as it was once thought to be
menopause treatment
HRT- Hormone replacement therapy

is controversial because it has been linked to increased risk of stroke, dementia, and cancer
Middle adulthood
Hormone changes and sexuality in men
Andropause - Most men do not lose the ability to father children
Modest decline in sexual hormone level and activity
Erectile Dysfunction is common in middle-aged men
May stem from physiological problems
Sexuality in Middle adulthood
Sexual activity occurs less frequently in middle adulthood than in early adulthood
Middle-aged men are more interested in sex than are middle-aged women
Living with a spouse or partner makes all the difference in terms of engaging in sexual activity
Information processing in middle adulthood
Speed of information processing declines moderately during middle adulthood
Memory decline in early adulthood is minimal (if at all) but does occur later part of middle age or in late adulthood
Starting in late middle age, more time is needed to learn new information
Linked to changes in working memory
Work in Midlife
Work is central to one’s life during middle age
In the U.S., about 80% of people aged 40 to 59 work
Midlife is a time of evaluation, assessment, and reflection about work roles and future goals

Far more couples today have to plan two retirements
Challenges of work in Midlife
currently, middle-aged workers face many challenges:
Globalization and exporting of jobs
Rapid development in technologies
Downsizing and restructuring of companies
Incentives to early retirement
Concerns about pensions and health care are at the same time delaying retirements
Midlife career changes are sometimes self-motivated, others are the consequence of losing one’s job
Leisure in Midlife
pleasant times after work when individuals are free to pursue activities and interests of their own choosing

Leisure opportunities may be expanded in middle adulthood, as people may have more money, more free time, and paid vacation
Leisure is good for your health, and can help individuals prepare psychologically for retirement
Erikson's Stage for Middle Adulthood
Generativity vs. Stagnation
Generativity: adults’ desire to leave legacies of themselves to the next generation
Biological generativity
Parental generativity
Work generativity
Cultural generativity
develops when individuals sense that they have done nothing for the next generation
Midlife Crisis
Vaillant’s “Grant Study”:
Midlife is not a crisis for most people
Only a minority of adults experience a midlife crisis
Reports of general well-being and life satisfaction tend to be high during mid-life

Adults often experience a peak of personal control and power during middle age
Adults’ ability to master their environment, autonomy (independence/freedom), and personal relations improve during middle age
Adult developmental experts generally agree that midlife crises have been exaggerated
AFFECTIONATE LOVE INCREASES during middle adulthood
Security, loyalty, & mutual emotional interest are more important
Most married individuals are satisfied with their marriages during midlife
Divorce in midlife can be less intense due to increased resources and lessened child-rearing responsibilities
However, emotional and time commitment to a long-lasting marriage is typically not given up easily
Staying married because of the children is a common reason for waiting to get a divorce
Empty Nest
Empty Nest Syndrome:a feeling of loneliness and decline in marital satisfaction after the children leave the home

For most parents, marital satisfaction actually increases during the years after child rearing
More time for career interests & each other
Refilling of empty nest
refilling of the ‘empty nest’ is becoming a common occurrence
Loss of privacy is a common complaint for both parents and adult children
Many middle-age adults become grandparents
Three prominent meanings:
Source of biological reward & continuity
Source of emotional self-fulfillment
Remote role

The grandparent role and its functions vary among families, ethnic groups, and cultures
Grandmothers typically have more contact with grandchildren than grandfathers
Three grandparenting styles
Formal style- great interest in grandchildren -no childrearing advice
Fun-seeking style- informal and playful, grandkids are a form of leisure activity (Mutual satisfaction)
Distant-figure style- benevolent but infrequent visits
An increasing number of U.S. grandchildren live with their grandparents 2.3 million in 1980; 6.1 million in 2005
Most common reasons are divorce, adolescent pregnancies, and parental drug use
Grandparents who take in grandchildren
are in better health, are better educated, are more likely to be working outside the home, and are younger than grandparents who move in with their children
Concern over grandparent visitation of children has become more common
Intergenerational relationships
Middle-aged and older adults typically express a strong feeling of responsibility between generations in their family
They share their experiences and transmit values to the younger generation
Family members typically maintain considerable contact across generations
When conflicts arise:
parents usually cite habits & lifestyle choices adult children cite communication & interaction styles
Mothers and Daughters
have closer relationships during their adult years than mothers and sons, fathers and daughters, and fathers and sons
Married Men
are more involved with their wives’ families than with their own
Maternal aunts and grandmothers
are cited as the most important or loved relative twice as often as their paternal counterparts
Sandwich generation
Mid-life couples who are taking care of their aging parents while still raising their children
Uncertainty or sandwich generation
Not knowing how long they will have to wait for "their time" if even knowing what is expected in regards to parents and children

Great source of stress and can temper their genuine commitment to help family members in crisis or need

Loss of independence and worry of duty to parents and other children
Us, kids and parents all want
Control of own life
Caught in between
What their children want and need
What they want and need
What their parents want and need
Need of each generation
Sense of Control
Sense of Purpose
Launching children into responsibile, happy adulthood

Revitalizing their marriage

Review satisfaction and success concerning occupation or career

Reorienting oneself to aging parents

Realigning sex roles

Reappraising where they are in terms of where they wanted to be by this time
Clarify the house rules
Have a weekly family meeting
Prepare a long-range financial plan
Use available community program's and services
Agree on a target date for departure for your young adult.
"Cut the apron strings"
Respect one another's privacy
Take care of you own family, Marriage and esp. self
Life span
The max amout of years a person can live
currently 120-125 yrs
Life expectancy
#of yrs an average person will probably live 78yrs
100 yrs or older
#of centarians increase 7%/yr
more Females than males
males tend to be healthier
Survival-Coping w/ stress, Genes, Family history, health, Education, personality, lifestyle
Physical changes to brain in late adulthood
brain shrinks 5-10%between ages 20-90
maybe from decreased dendrites, damage to mylen sheaths or death of brain cells
immune system in late adulthood
Extended duration of stress, diminshed restorative processes

Exercise improves immune system
the generation of new neurons throughout the life span

Dendrite growth increases from the 40’s to 70’s
Older brains rewire to compensate for losses
Hemispheric lateralization can decrease; may improve cognitive functioning
Physical Appearance & Movement
Wrinkles and age spots become more noticeable
People get shorter with aging due to bone loss in their vertebrae
Weight typically drops after we reach age 60; likely because we lose muscle
Older adults move more slowly than young adults
Exercise (such as regular walking) & appropriate weight lifting can help reduce these declines
Vision- late adulthood
Decline in vision becomes more pronounced
Adaptation to dark becomes especially difficult
Especially driving at night
Decline may be the result of a reduction in the quality or intensity of light reaching the retina
Color vision may decline as a result of the yellowing of the lens of the eye (ex: navy vs. black)
Depth perception declines in late adulthood
Decrease in contrast sensitivity makes edges and backgrounds harder to see
a thickening of the lens of the eye that causes vision to become cloudy, opaque, and distorted
Treated with glasses or surgery if necessary
damage to the optic nerve because of the pressure created by a buildup of fluid in the eye
Treated with eye drops; can cause permanent damage
Macular degeneration
deterioration of the macula of the retina, which makes objects directly in front hard to see
Peripheral vision may be normal
May be treated early with surgery, but often causes blindness
impairments are typical in late adulthood
15% of the population over age 65 is legally deaf
Usually due to degeneration of the cochlea
Some (not all) problems can be corrected by hearing aids
Smell and taste
losses typically begin about age 60
Often leads to a desire for more seasoned foods
touch and pain
Slight decline in touch sensitivity with age, especially lower extremities
Older adults are less sensitive to pain
sexuality in late adulthood
Many older adults are sexually active as long as they are healthy
Think of the benefits!
Older adults without a partner are far less likely to be sexually active than those who have a partner
health problems in late adulthood
Probability of having some disease or illness increases with age
Arthritis is the most common; Hypertension is 2nd
Older women have a higher incidence of arthritis, hypertension, and visual problems than older men
Older men are more likely than women to have hearing impairments
nearly 75% of older adults die from
cancer, heart disease, or stroke

Pneumonia, influenza, and diabetes are next
an inflammation of the joints accompanied by pain, stiffness, and movement problems
Common in older adults
Symptoms can be reduced with:
Use of some drugs like aspirin
Range-of-motion exercises
Weight reduction
Joint replacement in extreme cases
extensive loss of bone tissue
Affects women (80%) more often than men (20%)
Can be prevented by:
Eating calcium-rich fruits and vegetables
Having a regular exercise program
substance abuse - late adulthood
Medications can increase the risks associated with consuming alcohol or other drugs
Majority of U.S. adults 65 and older completely abstain from alcohol, but many believe substance abuse among older adults may be an “invisible epidemic”
Symptoms may be masked by other conditions
Late-Onset Alcoholism: onset of alcoholism after the age of 65
Often related to loneliness, loss of a spouse, or a disabling condition
Active adults are healthier and happier
Linked to increased longevity
Related to prevention of common chronic diseases
Associated with improvement in the treatment of many diseases
Can optimize body composition and reduce the decline in motor skills as aging occurs
Reduces the likelihood that older adults will develop mental health problems
Linked to improved brain & cognitive functioning
Multidimensionality & Multidirectionality
Speed of Processing:
Speed of processing information declines in late adulthood
Considerable individual variation
Often due to a decline in brain and CNS functioning
Selective attention
focusing on a specific aspect of experience that is relevant while ignoring others that are irrelevant
Older adults are generally less adept at this
Divided attention
concentrating on more than one activity at the same time
When tasks are easy, age differences are minimal
The more difficult the tasks, the less effectively older adults divide attention (ex: driving & talking)
Episodic memory
Where were you 9/11?
younger adults have better episodic memory
Semantic memory
What is the capital of WI?
does not decline as drastically as episodic memory
Exception: tip-of-the-tongue phenomenon
use it or lose it
Changes in cognitive activity patterns can result in disuse and lead to atrophy of skills
Certain mental activities can benefit the maintenance of cognitive skills
Reading books, doing crossword puzzles, going to lectures & concerts
Research suggests that mental exercise may reduce cognitive decline and lower the likelihood of developing Alzheimer disease
Major depression
mood disorder, deeply unhappy, demoralized, self derogatory, and bored-
loses energy easily, poor appetite, unmotivated,
Lower frequency of depression have had
fewer econimical hardships
fewer neg social exchanges
increase religiousity
Aerobic exercise
Good health
Global term for any neurological disorder- primary symptoms involve a deterioration of mental functioning

Often loses ability to care for themselves
loses ability to recognize familular people and surroundings

20% of people over 80 have dementia
Alzheimer Disease
Gradual deteriation of memory, reasoning, language and eventually physical function

Deficiency in brain messinger chemical ACETYLCHOLINE

as disease progresses brain shrinks and deteriorates
Erikson's socioemotional theory for late adulthood
Integrity vs. Despair
Activity theory
the more active and involved older adults are, the more likely they are to be satisfied with their lives
Socioemotional Selectivity Theory
Older adults become more selective about their social networks, spending more time with individuals with whom they have had rewarding relationships
Knowledg related

contrast to social isolation notion of elderly
Prejudice against others because of their age
10%-12% of older adults are living in poverty
Varies by age and ethnicity
Parkinson's disease
chronic progressive form of dementia characterized by muscle tremors, slowing movement and partial facial paralysis

Triggered by degeneration of dopamine producing neurons in the brain
Advance directive
Life-sustaining procedures shall not be used to prolong the life of an individual when death is imminent

Must be signed when an individual can still think clearly
the act of painlessly ending the lives of persons who are suffering from incurable diseases or severe disabilities

sometimes called "mercy killings"
a program committed to making the end of life free from pain, anxiety, and depression as much as possible
Palliative care
Care emphasized in a hospice, which involves reducing pain and suffering and helping individuals die with dignity
Kubler Ross' 5 stages of dying
1. Denial and Isolation
2. Anger
3. Bargaining
4. Depression
5. Acceptance
Emotional numbness, disbelief, seperation anxiety, despair, sadness, and lonliness that accompany the loss of someone we love