Sunday, August 23, 2015

The Conference for Ageing

The Conference for Ageing was held in the USA in July of this year. This conference is held every 10 years, but I think with the number of Boomers ageing, the conference should be held every 3-5 years. However, it is an important conference and so here are some interesting information from the conference and the survey.
Four years ago the United States of Aging Survey started and in 2015 it was comprised of 1,650 telephone interviews, including nationally representative samples of Americans 60 and older and professionals who work closely with them. Professionals included staff from the Area Agencies on Aging, credit union managers, primary care physicians and pharmacists. In addition to the national sample, older adults in Denver and Cincinnati were also surveyed.

Here is a chart of the top three concerns about ageing from people 60 plus and the professionals:
Adults 60+Professionals
Maintaining physical health - 40%Protection from financial scams - 43%
Memory loss - 35%Access to affordable housing - 38%
Maintaining mental health - 32%Memory loss - 38%
As you can see, elders and professionals differ dramatically on this one. All of the elders' top three choices are about health while the professionals worry about scams and housing.
Since Maintaining health is the top concern of Boomers, what do the professionals and the Boomers agree on in this area.
Professionals and older adults agree on these keys to maintaining good health as they age:
Eating healthy (91 percent and 72 percent, respectively)
Maintaining a positive attitude (86 percent and 72 percent) and getting enough sleep (79 percent and 67 percent). 
However, more professionals than older adults identify visiting the doctor regularly (90 percent and 62 percent, respectively) and taking medications as prescribed (89 percent and 63 percent) among these key factors. 
More than half of older Americans (57 percent) say they generally consider themselves very positive and optimistic. They cite their faith or spirituality, and a loving family as their top reasons for having a positive outlook on life (18 percent each)
The next two area can be summarized as Staying sharp. What do we need to do to keep sharp. Here are some ideas from Boomers and Professionals:
Keeping a positive attitude and exercising regularly (53 percent and 50 percent, respectively) are some of the best ways identified by older adults to stay mentally sharp. 
Seventy-two percent of professionals agree with older adults on the importance of regular exercise to stay mentally sharp, and nearly 6 in 10 (58 percent) say maintaining an active social life is also a priority to maintain mental fitness. 
Eighty-two percent of professionals cite decreased cognitive abilities – due to mental illness or memory loss – as the top reason preventing older Americans from staying mentally sharp, yet only 42 percent of older Americans cite this same reason. 
A majority of older adults identify inactivity (51 percent) as the top barrier to staying mentally sharp.

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