A Lifetime of Health
• Describe the longevity gender gap and possible
• List the benefits that older Americans can gain from
• Discuss the hormonal changes that occur in men and
women at midlife.
• Name two challenges of aging and discuss their risk
factors and possible ways of preventing them.
• Describe the purposes and types of advanced directives.
• Define death and explain the stages of emotional
reaction experienced in facing death.
• Identify an elderly family member or friend that has
excellent health and determine their beneficial behaviors
that may have contributed to their health status.
Topics of Focus For This Chapter
Gender Longevity gender gap
Midlife Hormone changes
Physical Activity Benefits
Death Advance directives
Stages and emotions
The Difference In Life Expectancy
Why Do Women Live Longer Than Men?
Protects heart, brain, bone and blood
Boosts immune function
May protect against metastases
Chromosome Extra dose of immune genetics
Depresses immune function
Increases risk of heart disease and
Injury Men die more frequently of injury
Life Years Lost Due To Lifestyle Habits
Health Hazard Years Lost
Smoking 10 10
Pressure 1.5 1.6
Sugar 0.5 0.3
Obesity 1.3 1.3
• Physical Activity: It’s Never Too Late
• Exercise slows many of the changes that
occur with age, including increases in body
fat and decreases in muscle strength.
• According to the U.S. surgeon general,
physical activity offers older Americans many
additional benefits, including:
• Greater ability to live independently.
• Reduced risk of falling and fracturing bones.
• Lower risk of dying from coronary heart disease.
• Reduced blood pressure.
• Fewer symptoms of anxiety.
• Improvements in mood.
• Lower health costs.
• Nutrition and Obesity
• The most common nutritional disorder in older
persons is obesity.
• Obese individuals face higher risk of diabetes, heart
disease, stroke, and other health problems, including
• The Aging Brain
• Mental ability does not decline along with physical
• Using your brain as you age greatly decreases the
risk for memory loss.
Changes At Midlife For Women
Begins 4 to10 years before last period
Hormone shifts begin causing night sweats and
FSH and LH increase; estrogen decreases
Complete cessation of menstrual periods for 12
Average age for menopause is 51.5
Menopause Has Some Health Effects
Decreased estrogen causes:
Dryness of skin and mouth
Increased effect of androgens
Increased risk of Urinary Tract Infections
Increased risk of other health conditions
Hormone Therapy During Menopause
Recommended for short-term symptom relief
Minimize hot flashes and night
Protect from heart disease and
Increases breast cancer, heart
disease, breast cancer and stroke
Men Experience Changes At Midlife Too
By 30-40% between ages 48-70
Loss of bone density
Lowered fertility and virility
Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy
May affect urine flow
Sexuality and Aging
Better health translates into better sex life
Sexually active men live longer
Need more time for erection or
Those who enjoyed sexual activity
Produce less vaginal lubricant
Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI)
Noticeable and measurable decline
in cognitive abilities, including
memory and thinking skills.
Reduce CV risk factors
Participate in mentally stimulating
and socially engaging activities.
Exercise regularly to improve
blood flow to the brain.
Alzheimer’s Disease Is a Form of Dementia
Dementia Loss of previous mental capability
Progressive deterioration of brain
cells and mental capacity
Increased sensitivity to alcohol
Decreased frustration tolerance
Alzheimer’s Disease Is a Form of Dementia
Still not sufficient evidence to prove that any
preventative strategy can prevent Alzheimer’s
Have a purpose in life
Treatment No known treatment
Osteoporosis Is a Chronic Disease
Losses in bone density become so severe
that a bone will break with slight trauma or
•Eat enough calcium or take a supplement
•Drink alcohol moderately
•Let the sunshine in
The Aging Pill: Physical Activity
Older people receive additional benefits from
· Greater ability to live independently
· Reduced risk of falling and bone fractures
· Lower risk of dying from heart disease
· Lower risk of developing high blood
pressure, colon cancer and diabetes
· Fewer symptoms of anxiety and depression
· Improvements in mood and well-being
These documents are important because, without clear
indications of a person’s preferences, hospitals and other
institutions often make decisions on an individual’s behalf.
Gives someone else power to make
decisions on your behalf
Indicate whether you want or don’t want
all medical treatment and technology
used to prolong life
A handwritten (not typed) statement
that some states will recognize
Advance directive component that
specifies you do not want to be
resuscitated if heart stops
Which person they want to make health-care decisions for
them when they are no longer able to do so.
Which kinds of medical treatments they do or don’t want
How comfortable they want to be made
How they want people to treat them
What they want loved ones to know
The Gift of Life
• If you’re at least 18 years old, you can fill out a
donor card, agreeing to designate, in the event
of your death, any organs or tissues needed for
Categories Of Death
Death Moment heart stops
Death End of all vital functions
Gradual death of body cells after
Absence of electrical activity on
EEG and lack of reflexes
Death Moment when soul leaves body
Kubler-Ross’ Emotional Response To Dying
Several stages may occur at the same time
and some may happen out of sequence.
Other Death Topics
Typically daughter, wife or sister
may experience anxiety and
Hospice Home-health program helps dying
Autoscopy—watching from above
foreign region or dimension
Suicide Is Most Common In Those Above 65
Person suffering without future positive outcome
ends their life
Perhaps as a result of undiagnosed depression
Authorized in Oregon and Netherlands
Debate about physician’s responsibility
• A burial is typically the third most
expensive purchase of a lifetime, behind
the cost of a house and car.
• If the body is to be cremated, you must
comply with some additional formalities,
with which the funeral director can help
• The tradition of a funeral may help
survivors come to terms with the death,
enabling them to mourn their loss and to
celebrate the dead person’s life.
Autopsies Examine Body After Death
Cause of death
Gather information for evidence
Determine more exact cause of
Grief’s Effects On Health Are Numerous
· Changes in respiratory, hormonal and
central nervous system
· Mood swings
· Lose appetite, feel physically sick
· Sleep poorly
· Increased rates of depression, suicide,
serious mental illness and premature death
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