title:What’s Your Aging in American IQ? Take the Quiz and Find Out.
author:Susan Dunn, MA
Curious how long you may live? Use the Life Expectancy Calculator: http://www.bbc.co.uk/health/interactivearea/living_100.shtml. (Be prepared to know your weight in stones!)
TRUE or FALSE
1. Older adults have more mental health problems than younger adults.
FALSE. Overall prevalence of mental disorder in older adults is less than in any other age group, and general life satisfaction is as good as, if not better than, any other age group. (APA)
2. People become more difficult and rigid with advancing years.
FALSE Personality remains relatively consistent throughout the lifespan. (APA)
3. Sight declines with age.
FALSE Although changes in vision become more common with age, any change in vision, regardless of age, is related to a specific disease. If you’re having problems with your vision, see your doctor. (National Institute on Aging, NIA)
4. More women survive to old age than men.
TRUE Women tend to outlive men by an average of 8 years. There are 150 women for every 100 men over age 65, and nearly 250 women for every 100 men over 85. (NIA) Among centenarians, 85% are women and 15% are men, but within that group, the men are doing better.
5. Senility is a meaningless term that should be discarded.
TRUE Everyone does not become “senile” sooner or later if they live long enough. Even among those who live to be 80 or older, only 20-25% develop Alzheimer’s disease or some other incurable form of brain disease. (NIA) 15% of centenarians are living on their own!
6. American families have largely abandoned their older members.
FALSE The American family is still the #1 caretaker of older Americans. Most older people live close to their children and see them often; many life with their spouses. In all, 8 out of 10 men and 6 out of 10 women live in family settings. (NIA)
7. Modern health, medicine sanitation and lifestyle have greatly extended the overall maximum lifespan of the human species.
FALSE It seems fairly fixed at an average of around 80 years, with a few people living to a maximum of 120 years.
However, more people are reaching the 80s. 200 years ago, more than 80% of the population would be dead by the age of 50, whereas now less than 10% have died by 50. (BBC)
8. Most people over the age of 65 will have lost interest or capacity for sexual relations.
FALSE The majority continue to have both interest and capacity. Masters and Johnson (1966) found that the capacity for satisfying sexual relations continues into the 70s and 80s for healthy couples. The Duke Longitudinal Studies resulted in similar findings. (Palmore 1974)
9. The number of older Americans has doubled since 1900.
FALSE It has increased more than 10-fold. In 1990 there were only 3,000,000 people 65 and older. Now an estimated 33.3 million people (12% of the population) are 65 and older. (Home Instead Senior Care)
10. There are currently about 10,000 people 100 years and older in the US, but the number is declining.
FALSE There are currently 65,000 people 100 years and older, and the number is projected to grow to 381,000 by 2030. (HISC) In fact, centenarians are the fastest growing segment of population in the US.