Midlife can be defined as the centralperiod in a person’s life between the ages of 40 to 65 years1.
During thisperiod, adults may take on new job responsibilities and therefore oftenfeel a need to reassess their professional standing and make changes while theyfeel they still have time. In the middle adulthood stage, the main priority isto develop generativity. Later life is understood to be a period which beginsat age 65 where adults tend to find meaning and satisfaction in life.Jean Piaget who is the father of cognitivedevelopment explains four stages of development.
The sensorimotor stage beginsfrom birth to 2 years and it involves infants who think only using their sensesand motor skills by listening, watching and touching. The second stage is thepreparations which is experienced by children from ages 2 to 6. Here, thepreschoolers are able to explore the world using their own thoughts as guidesand develop language skills to communicate their thoughts to others. The concrete operations stage is the third onwhich involves school age children that are able to solve every day logicalproblems. The formal operations stage begins from 12years to adulthood whichinvolves adolescents who can reason logically about possibilities. Postformalreasoning is a proposed stage of development that examines how thinking andproblem solving are restructed in adulthood to integrate abstract reasoningwith practical considerations2. Compared to Piaget’s last stage of cognitivedevelopment, postformal reasoning is different from formal operations becauseit goes beyond just thinking logically but actually encourages the making ofpractical decisions.
An example can be seen in a situation where I set outdaily goals which is a logical thing to do as it keeps me on track to achievemy dreams. However, the practical decisions would be to do things in a way thatwill ensure the achievement of my goals. There are two types ofintelligences; fluid and crystallized. Fluid intelligence is the capacity tosolve problems without relying from the past while crystallized intelligence isthe ability to use skills and knowledge. Fluid intelligence declines from the20’s while crystallized intelligence remains as we develop. The brain isdesigned to oversee the proper functioning of the entire body and it thereforeencourages the ability to use skills and knowledge to achieve certain goals. Crystallizedintelligence allows one to think on their feet.
When I used to work at Macysthat focuses on making the customers to have a magical experience, I wasrequired to possess many skills and have an in depth knowledge on the differenttypes of dresses I tried to convince the customers to get. By late adulthood, biological agingaffects all body structures and systems as sensory change is inevitable in oldage. Almost every older adult has problems with vision as less light reachesthe retina3.
Many adults developcataracts that causes a cloud on the lens which leads to blindness. Thesymptoms of vision impairment include; vitreous clouds, lens yellows, irisfades and the pupil shrinks. Hearingloss is also another type of sensory change that begins in middle adulthood. Itmakes it difficult to distinguish between lower and higher frequency sounds.The symptoms include, ringing in the ears, sensitivity to sound. Hearing lossis more devastating than vision loss because the inability to hear car horns,street cars and doorbell sounds is a huge safety concern.
ADL refers to activities of dailyliving. There are two types of ADL’s which are instrumental and basic. Examplesof instrumental ADL’s include; Cleaning and maintaining the house, managingmoney, moving within the community. The basic activities of daily livinginclude; eating, bathing. Loosing your ADL’s of basic living is very badbecause they are necessary for survival. Menopause refers to the cessation ofovulation and menstruation. The timing is greatly influenced by heredity.
As menopause approaches,ovulation and estrogen production become erratic and may cause your periods tobecome irregular. Some of the symptoms include; hotflashes when estrogen levels decrease. Nightsweats and sleep disturbance are one of the symptoms which areattached to menopause. Your usual sleep patterns may undergo dramatic changesbecause of night sweats, which are brought on by hot flashes.
Hormonereplacement therapy addresses most of the symptoms of menopause and tries torestore the customer’s life. ReferencesCattell,R. B. (1971). Abilities: Their structure, growth, and action. New York:Houghton Mifflin. ISBN 0-395-04275-5Kuther, Tara(2017).
Lifespan Development: Lives in context. Sage publications, Inc, pg 292– 411 ISBN 978-1-4833-6885-8Kuther, Tara(2017). Lifespan Development: Lives in context. Sage publications, Inc, pg 292– 411 ISBN 978-1-4833-6885-7Owesley,C.
(2011). Aging and vision. Vision Research, 51(13), 1610-1622.