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Theories of Ageing Essay

Major theories of ageing in relation to the development of an individual As an individual grows older they get more withdrawn from the rest of society. The society actually rejects older people from a lot of activities. It is part of growing older and it is a way of distancing yourself from people before you die. Therefore the two major theories examine what causes an individual to distance themselves from this the rest of the people. The social disengagement theory basically examines the development of an individual and how it influences their development as they grow older.

The activity theory of ageing examines how an individual continues to be attached to their normal routine of life. The two theories suggest two different things which two different individuals might have an impact on. The social disengagement theory would affect the personality of an individual because they are disengaging from the rest of the society and they become lonelier. Loneliness would impact in their lives because they have no one that pays interest to what they want and what makes them happy.

Once the individual isolates themselves from the rest of the society, everybody who was close distances themselves. The social disengagement theory suggests that it is normal for older people to withdraw from the society and it becomes part of their life. This would not be very accurate because it causes the individual to be more stressed. They would be more stressed because they are disengaging from the society and they are getting hold of the fact that they might be dying and nobody cares about their existence anymore.

This would be depressing to the individual and it would be more appropriate that they be active as the time to live would be less and it would be healthier not to be stressed and depressed from being lonely and disengaging from the society. The suggestion of the disengagement theory does not help the individual to feel good about them but it makes them feel that they are being isolated and they are getting hold of the fact of death. The activity theory suggests that an individual continues to feel great about their attitude towards their life. This helps the individual to feel the need to be positive about their life.

The activity theory suggests that an individual’s self-esteem is not affected by ageing as long as activities e. g. work are replaced with new activities. The more the individual socialises the more they have an active life and they are happier in their in old age. This does not make the individual feel that they are being left out because they are personally involved in the activities that make them feel happier in their lives. The activity theory has an impact in the development of an individual because the more they are happy at their old age; the more they get the opportunity to spend as much time with close relatives and friends.

This is helps majorly in the development because the individual can see that people are there for them and it becomes easier for the individual to come to terms easily to that they might die. The acceptance of their death makes the individual be happier and they want to live their life to the fullest. The theory assumes a positive relationship between activity and life satisfaction. Activity theory reflects the functionalist view that the balance that an individual develops in middle age should be maintained in later years. The theory predicts that older adults that face role loss will substitute former roles with other alternatives.

This would help them to continue their daily lives as normal. This would be a huge advantage to the individual than disengaging from the society. This is so because they get to be fit in their physique, that’s if they choose to start having an exercise routine or they may want to take up course because they feel the need to expand their knowledge. If the individual disengages from the society, it becomes difficult for them to engage in any form of activities. The social disengagement theory might be the only option of the individual if they are really terrified of being out.

This would also be an option if the service user feels that they are better in that situation when they have no friends and family. Therefore the social disengagement theory would be an option if the service user does not feel good about their self-esteem. The activity theory is best theory because it keeps the elderly person in touch with everything and everyone that is around them. Therefore residential homes should encourage service users to physically and mentally active as it would contribute to their social life in the society.


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