This is the 137th blog and we have explored many issues affecting older people, especially those in rural areas. The topics have been very diverse and I wonder if we have covered all the essential areas? I want to ask y’all out there to help in identifying the BIG areas where getting older presents us with challenges.
On March 15th, Tony DiNuzzo, Rebecca Galloway, Bronia Michejenko and myself will present a panel discussion on issues in aging for our HomeTown Science 3D Seminar Series (http://www.utmb.edu/hometownscience). The discussion is called Aging and Wellness: Ways Science Can Help and we will spend time talking about five questions. To me these five questions embody the BIG issues that face everyone who moves into and beyond their seventh decade.
Each question is below with a brief expansion of the issues involved.
- Who wants to live forever? – The question of quality of life – When does quality of life trump healthcare interventions?
- Why does everyone seem to die from a broken hip? – Strength, balance and rehabilitation – What can elders and their families do to reduce the consequences of loss of strength and balance?
- Nobody is taking my car keys away! – Mobility, access and depending on others – What are the options for getting around when driving one’s self is no longer an option?
- I don’t want to die in a nursing home. – Where and how to live throughout ones lifespan – What are the options for aging in place?
- Why do I have to repeat this every time? – Coordination of care and teamwork – Why can’t health providers share information and test results so it does not have to be repeated over and over.
I did leave off particular diseases even though aging does make us more prone to a number of conditions. In a way disease is unpredictable but I think everyone has to face the issues above, illness or no. Finally, one’s particular illness will probably make some of the issues more challenging.
So, here’s my question for today. Are these five item an exhaustive list of the issues around aging? Can you suggest another? Comment below or come to the Weekly Discussion on Aging and we’ll brainstorm the question.
Join us for a real-time discussion about the questions raised by this essay on Tuesday at from 12:00 p.m. CST to 12:45 p.m. CST (10 a.m. PST/SLT). See Discussion and SL tabs above for details. Link to the virtual meeting room: http://tinyurl.com/cjfx9ag.