PHYSICAL AND PSYCHOLOGICAL CHANGES DURING OLD AGE
The process of aging is associated with various changes, which are as follows.
Physical changes During Old Age
Old people develop physical changes due to the process of maturation like graying of hair, wrinkled skin, decline in height and a bowed posture. There may be loss of vision and decrease in sense of learning. Their physical strength and vigour also decreases.
Psychological change During Old Age
With increasing urbanization and generation gap, nuclear family systems have emerged. The elderly are considered irrelevant and redundant by their own families and are left lonely. Loneliness leads to depression and in turn loss of appetite. They tend to follow irregular meal times leading to malnutrition.
b. Economic aspects
Among many elderly individuals financial constraints often limit their food intake.
Emotional stress and deprivation leads to alterations in food habits and attitude towards food. In addition, hormonal changes associated with anxiety depress the flow of digestive juices which may result in impaired digestion and absorption.
d. Loss of self esteem and independence
With retirement the elderly may experience a loss of self esteem. With decreasing physical strength, mobility and diminishing financial resources their dependence on others increase. They sometimes feel powerless leaving the task of decision making to youngsters. This may cause depression and frustration among elderly.