Counseling For Gerontology Essay

Counseling For Gerontology Essay

Counseling For Gerontology Essay

 

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The United States has a total population of approximately 327.2 million people. Currently, there are more than thirty-eight million people who are 65 years of age and above. 10% of these need home-based care. This is because they suffer from different psychiatric and physical illnesses, (Leik, 2018). Some of them have disabilities that hinder them from walking around or going anywhere which forces them to be homebound and in some cases be hospitalized. In this paper, we are going to discuss the issues that affect the aged in the United States and the things that the society, family and gerontological professionals can do to prepare for these situations. Counseling For Gerontology Essay

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Introduction

A very big improvement can be seen from the last century to the current one as far as life expectancy is concerned. This is something that has happened globally and the United States is not an exception. The United States has a population of approximately 327.2 million people. Currently, there are more than thirty-eight million people who are 65 years of age and above. From the 1900s to 2008 the percentage of people aged above 65 years old moved from 4% which is 3 million people to 12.8% which is 38 million, (Finlay, & Yeh, 2019). The life expectancy continues increasing and the state and by 2030 the state expects in every five people there will be one person over 65 years of age. This means that 72% of the whole population will be 65 years of age and above. The annual income of the average person in the United States is around 31,000 dollars.

Issues

Suffering from chronic diseases. Due to their old age, most people aged 65 years and above suffer from chronic diseases because as they age, so do their cells and therefore their bodies become incapable of protecting themselves, (Wagner, Mullen, & Sims, 2019). Although diseases like cancer are known to be lifestyle and hereditary diseases, they are common with elderly people more than younger people. Most people in their old age find themselves with diseases like diabetes, cancer, high blood pressure and other diseases that are related to old age. It becomes really stressful for them and also in hospitals. Counseling For Gerontology Essay

It has been noted that as time goes by the health care have reported a really high number of patients who suffer from chronic diseases. In some reports, physicians say that it is because people are not on the look of how they live or eat. They also say that people are not taking balanced diets and exercising, (Krivosheev, Kartashova, Tikhonova, & Zakharova, 2017). However, different reports explain that because these diseases are associated with old age and life expectancy keeps rising, therefore we can conclude that, that is why there are so many cases related to these diseases.

Dementia. This is another issue that is affecting this kind of population. Although in most cases people associate it with old age, it is not something normal. Dementia is a syndrome that affects a person’s behavior, thinking and even makes their memory deteriorate, (Lee, 2018). When people are suffering from dementia, their normal activities are affected. This is because they sometimes have behavior disorders and they keep forgetting things which make them not reliable. This is the reason why there is a given age of retirement. When a person has dementia, they cannot be relied on even at work.

Most people that suffer from dementia often go through phases of being okay and those of not remembering things. To some, it goes to the extremes and they end up forgetting even their family members including their children, (Fullen, Gorby, Chan, Dobmeier, & Jordan, 2019). When suffering from dementia, the patient or the person requires to see a therapist or get a prescription. Dementia can last for a very long time in someone’s body and in some people, it stays forever. Dealing with a person who has dementia is difficult because you have to be there and watch their every move. Counseling For Gerontology Essay

Falls

According to the AHA report, a third of adults aged 65 and above fall occasionally. This is because as they age, their muscles become week and sometimes the weight is too heavy for their limbs to carry and therefore they end up falling. Another fall because they lack balance. A younger person is able to control themselves from falling a lot of times because they have balance even in the way they walk. However, when it comes to people who are elderly, their bodies cannot balance themselves and they end up falling.

Moreover, fatigue contributes to their falling. When older people are tired, they have a very high chance of falling. This is because the cells generate energy at a very slow rate and therefore when involved in a small activity, their bodies get really tired. The biggest damage that this cause is injuries that take long to heal, (RATI‘IBONE-McCUAN $ E. L. O. I. S. E. 2017). As we have explained, an older person’s cell is weak compared to those of a young person. For this reason, even the rate at which injuries of older people heals is slow. This endangers their lives because the longer the injury stays without healing, the higher the probability of that person’s body becoming weaker.

Obesity.

This is another common issue with persons in this age bracket. Not forgetting that these people rarely exercise or take activities that might help their bodies is one of the main things that bring out the obesity factor well, (Hill, Chandler, & Gerhardt, 2018). Normally a person is required to do some exercises so as to keep fit and to avoid accumulating excess fat in the body. However, most people in this age bracket are obese and some of them cannot even move because of this weight. There is a particular instance of a woman in California who was weighing 600 pounds. Counseling For Gerontology Essay

The research explained that she was doing a lot of junk foods and was stress eating because of her condition which made it worse. She is not the only one. There are very many cases of people aged 65 and above in health care who have been hospitalized because of obesity. The worst part is that obesity can cause other complications like asthma because excess fat makes it difficult for the person to breathe. Also, it can lead to serious diseases like diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart attacks. The most difficult part is that you cannot make an elderly person have a normal person’s exercise routine.

Recommendations for the aging population

Most of these issues are issues that cannot be avoided because they are things that are associated with aging, (Krivosheev, Kartashova, Tikhonova, & Zakharova, 2017). Therefore, it is important to be prepared to handle them and manage them. The first thing should be to have health care facilities that have more of what older people need. Since we have seen that life expectancy is increasing, this means even in hospitals the higher number of patients will be older people. The other thing should be to ensure that everyone is covered by an insurance policy just to be safe. This will go a long way to even paying for hospital bills instead of being a burden to family members or straining in your old age which might lead to other complications like developing stress tumors, (Fullen, 2018). Although it is not an ultimatum that a person might go through these issues, saving enough might help a person afford good home care while enjoying their elderly years. Counseling For Gerontology Essay

Recommendations for gerontological professionals

Gerontological professionals should take it upon themselves to ensure that people have full information about dealing with old age and the issues that people go through. This will mean them talking to people, holding conferences and meetings to educate people on how to deal with old age issues. They are expected to talk to people about the effects of eating healthy food and balanced diets. As an aged person, one of the biggest favor a person can do is to make sure they eat healthy food, take a lot of water and do occasional walking to avoid diseases caused by excessive accumulation of fats in the body. The professionals should also emphasize that as a person ages they should be more careful not to injure or hurt themselves in any way because this strains the body cells.

Conclusion

10% of people ages 65 in the US need home-based care because they suffer from different psychiatric and physical illnesses. A very big improvement can be seen from the last century to the current one as far as life expectancy is concerned. The life expectancy continues increasing and the state and by 2030 the state expects in every five people there will be one person over 65 years of age, (Humphrey, 2017). Due to their old age, most people aged 65 years and above suffer from chronic diseases because as they age, so do their cells and therefore their bodies become incapable of protecting themselves. Dementia, falling, and obesity is other issues. The US should have health care facilities that have more of what older people need and gerontological professionals are expected to talk to people about the effects of eating healthy food and balanced diets. Counseling For Gerontology Essay

References

Finlay, J. M., & Yeh, J. C. (2019). INTEREST GROUP SESSION—ENVIRONMENTAL GERONTOLOGY: PRECARIOUS AGING IN PLACE? CRITICAL PERSPECTIVES ON AGING IN CONTEXTS OF INSTABILITY. Innovation in Aging3(Supplement_1), S561-S562. Retrieved from: 

Fullen, M. (2018). Ageism and the counseling profession: Causes, consequences, and methods for counteraction. Retrieved from: 

Fullen, M. C., Gorby, S., Chan, C. D., Dobmeier, R. A., & Jordan, J. (2019). The Current State of Gerontological Counseling Research: A 26‐Year Content Analysis. Journal of Counseling & Development97(4), 387-397. Retrieved from: 

Hill, C., Chandler, K., & Gerhardt, C. (2018). Building a Professional Identity: The Role of Conferences. Retrieved from: 

Humphrey, W. (2017). Counseling the Geriatric Population: Gerontology Education, Agesim, and Death Anxiety as Predictors of Gerontological Counselor Competencies (Doctoral dissertation, The University of Texas at San Antonio). Retrieved from: 

Krivosheev, S. A., Kartashova, O. V., Tikhonova, U. A., & Zakharova, O. V. (2017). Pharmaceutical care for patients of the third age in pharmacy organizations as a significant aspect of social gerontology. Advances in gerontology= Uspekhi gerontologii30(4), 596-600. Retrieved from: 

Lee, C. C. (Ed.). (2018). Counseling for social justice. John Wiley & Sons. Retrieved from: : 

Leik, M. T. C. (2018). Adult-gerontology Nurse Practitioner: Q & A Flashcards. Springer Publishing Company. Retrieved from: 

RATI‘IBONE-McCUAN, E. L. O. I. S. E. (2017). Family counseling: An emerging approach in clinical gerontology. Serving the elderly: Skills for practice, 51. Retrieved from: 

Wagner, N. J., Mullen, P. R., & Sims, R. A. (2019). Professional Counselors’ Interest in Counseling Older Adults. Adultspan Journal18(2), 70-84. Retrieved from: 

Counseling For Gerontology Essay

 

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