Growing old gracefully
Each person may use a different description and meaning for the phrase “Growing old gracefully”. To some it means to stay active, to others it may mean to have a young look or to be in the center of attention. Growing old gracefully does not start at the age of fifty, but many years before. It is a way an individual treats his/her mind, spirit, and body. Growing old gracefully also indicates growing up mentally. It is rather about an attitude than an action.
The challenges that often appear in a later life such as medical issues, retirement, and increased isolation can lead to depression. While sadness and depression might seem to be familiar, many depressed old people claim they do not to feel sad at all. They may complain about physical issues, low motivation, and a lack of energy. In fact, physical complaints are often a prevailing symptom of depression of the elderly. The majority of individuals do not change their normal lifestyles after being diagnosed of serious chronic diseases either in the long or in the short term. This is an alarming point since people with more than one chronic disease have a harder time to manage with their health problems (Span, 2012).
Resilience is a capacity to sustain catastrophe and stress. Being resilient does not mean to live without experiencing painful and stressful situations. People feel sadness, grief, and a range of emotions after loss and suffering. The way to resilience lies in working through the painful events and stressful cases. Resilience improves as people grow up and gain better self-management skills. The adequate social support and permanent social interaction play a moderate buffering role against fall representing a daily basic activity among the most depressed older patients. A social maintenance may buffer the neuroendocrine effects of depression. An efficient social interaction may stimulate depressed patients to remain physically active, diminishing an eventual severe impairment. The patient’s compliance with a treatment may also have a great impact in the presence of a supportive environment (Hays, Steffens, Flint, Bosworth, & George, 2001).