Aging and Identity





Aging and Identity

Aging refers to the social, emotional, and biological changes that occur when people mature and reach different stages of existence. Almost everybody is affected by aging at some point in their lives (Cruikshank 147-151). Kids grow up to be teens, infants grow up to be children, youth grow up to be teenagers, and adults grow up to be adults. Aging, on the other hand, is associated with the elderly most cultures define old age as being between the ages of 60 and 65. Though social and personal characteristics differ in this stage of life, occupational retirement, grandchildren, and a loss in health are all related.

Age is related to social construction, a concept developed and adopted by a community. In various phases of life, people’s duties, obligations, and rights are all influenced by societal systems and dominant values and attitudes. Sociologists strive to learn how the aging of diverse cultures and populations is built and observed. The multidisciplinary area of gerontology, aging, and old age research is an important topic of sociology. Gerontologists investigate the interrelated physical, social and cultural mechanisms of old age. The social and cultural facets of aging are largely the subject of sociologists. For example, communities with greater numbers of older persons face the challenge of ensuring that individuals who no longer function are well-being. Seniors will experience many social challenges, including isolation and lack of freedom. Poverty from wage losses is still a major problem for many older people. They may be marginalized, viewed as trivial, and not important to a culture or community. Attitudes towards these challenges and remedies are embedded in a society’s history and function.

The exclusion from workforce and the qualifying for social security schemes were correlated with contemporary developed societies. The US’ Social Security, a federal pension program that provides wages (benefits) to seniors and their wives, is a central public program for elderly people. Social security eligibility starts at age 62. However, the age of complete retirement — the age of retirement and ultimate benefit— is 65 to 67 years. This represents the comparatively high life expectancy or total life period of a US population and income. For Americans, the estimated life expectancy in 2017 was 78.7 years. This suggests that Americans will on average hope to remain inside or above the mid-70s. Another feature in contemporary society is the decline in morbidity, a decrease in the time individuals go sick or injured before death in comparison with previous eras. In several countries, progress in medicine and technology, and an increased awareness of a healthier lifestyle began in the 20th

Elderly people’s care and social identity vary from one society to another. In certain cultures, being an elder implies an individual gets more respect and rank. These cultures consider elderly people as important storehouses of knowledge and life experience. Youth and the appearance of youth were strongly regarded in some countries, like the United States. Old age is considered very bad. Seen symptoms of aging, including wrinkled skin and grey or thinner hair, are linked to physical and mental fatigue and cause the elderly to become dislocated in family, the community, and society as a whole (Atakere and Baker 652). A shortage of technical knowledge drives many elderly people out of work or causes unemployment impossible to tackle. It may also affect interactions with younger members of the family, who communicate primarily via digital technology. The total demographic composition will also influence the views of aging. Countries with more elderly residents appear to have more pessimistic perceptions about aging. This may be partly attributed to the growing stress on the younger generation. For example, there are disproportionately large percentages of elderly in the United States and in Western Europe in comparison with the numbers of children and working citizens. This ensures that fewer young adults provide about elderly people and compensate for social welfare services to help aging people.

As people grow old they are often experience various challenges in their life and thus their identity has to be respected. They are seasoned, but the complexities of aging are often societal problems. Societies have diverse approaches to the complexities of aging (“Aging, Identity, Attitudes, and Intergenerational Communication” 74-79). Many of these issues are familiar to the world’s population. Advanced age, for example, leads to decreased physical and mental fitness. Aged individuals are most likely to have conditions such as heart failure and cancer. Vision loss, loss of hearing, arthritis, and other disabilities correlated with age that poses a challenge to live may contribute to decreased mobility, physical strength, and quality of life. Any severe mental well-being disorders, including schizophrenia and Alzheimer’s disease, are often closely linked to advanced age. Physicians and researchers specialized in geriatrics, an area of medicine dedicated to aged conditions, answer the medical questions associated with old age.

A variety of factors can contribute to elderly isolation. One cause is a lack of attendance at work. Because of retirement or career loss, seniors can be cut off from vast social networks. Cultural trends may also affect the loneliness of the elderly. Americans’ focus on middle and upper-class jobs and wages is causing children to travel and raise their families farther away from their parents’ homes. Another aspect that contributes to women’s loneliness is that they live longer lives than men. Elderly widows are more likely to live in families and environments where multigenerational families are less frequent (“Women and Aging International: Diversity, Challenges, and Contributions” 7-10). It is not uncommon for elderly American women to remain alone after the death of their husbands. Another aspect that contributes to the elderly’s isolation is that their peer circle is also less noticeable, whether due to illness, relocation, or death. Loneliness are signs of social deprivation and mental health problems such as depression and anxiety. When an elder does not have someone to turn to for help, particularly in an emergency, his or her health and well-being suffer.

Work cited

“Aging, Identity, Attitudes, and Intergenerational Communication.” Understanding Communication and Aging: Developing Knowledge and Awareness, pp. 73-91.

Cruikshank, Margaret. “Aging and identity politics.” Journal of Aging Studies, vol. 22, no. 2, 2015, pp. 147-151.

Atakere, D., and T. Baker. “CHRONIC ILLNESS AND IDENTITY: SOCIAL IDENTITY IN OLDER BLACK MALES AGING WITH CHRONIC ILLNESS.” Innovation in Aging, vol. 2, no. suppl_1, 2018, pp. 652

“Women and Aging International: Diversity, Challenges, and Contributions.” Women and Aging International, 2018, pp. 7-10.