An example of how society disengages from older people is the fact that health insurance for when people go on holiday abroad goes up, meaning older people are less likely to be able to afford to go on holiday because of how much the insurance costs. The reason for the insurance going up for older people is because they are more likely to get ill and need medical treatment, which can be very pricey especially in foreign countries. "Older travellers can find it hard to get holiday insurance as insurers are less willing to offer cover to people above a certain age" http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/columnists/nicktrend/8505286/Travel-advice-the-best-travel-insurance-for-over-65s.htmlSociety disengages older people due to the fact that health insurance goes up drastically over the age of 65 and consequently they may not be able to afford the travel insurance and then they don’t want to go on holiday in case they fall ill in a foreign country.
I agree with this theory because I do believe that a lot of older people do withdraw themselves from society for a number of reasons such as; ill health, retirement from work, inability to use technology etc. All of these factors cause older people to disengage with society, when they had a job they had a role in society whereas when they retired they no longer have that role in society and they may feel as though they aren’t needed anymore because they aren’t contributing to society. I also agree that society is to blame for them disengaging because in society, there are numerous age restrictions on things, such as mortgages, and getting a new job “Pushing the pension age to 70 risks opening a new front of discrimination against older workers, which experts warn is already systemic and blatant."
This quote shows that as a society, employers are discriminating against older people when it comes to applying for jobs and the application process, therefore society is causing older people to disengage because they aren’t able to get a job if they wanted to and consequently they may not be able to find something else to do with their time.
The activity theory was created by Robert J. Havighurst in 1961. He suggested that in order for older people to be happy, they need to stay active and maintain social interactions. By having the company and support of friends, as well as hobbies and interests it can prevent the loss of mental and physical skills and potentially 'slow down' ageing. The theory suggests that the more social groups they have and the more activities that they participate in, that they have a better quality of life and age better than those who aren’t active when they are older. Older people may have to develop new hobbies and interests, as they may not be able to do the ones they did when they were younger and they may need to form new relationships with people in order to stay active and social, they should for as long as possible ignore the limitations of old age. The activities that people start should be ones that they enjoy and look forward to because if they aren’t, then although the person will be physically active but they won’t have overall satisfaction, similarly if the older person makes new friends; they should share the same interests so that they remain active but they have overall satisfaction.
Older people have a range of resources to keep them fit and active, Gyms and fitness centres now offer a club which is specifically designed for older people, as they won't be able to do the fitness regimes for younger generations. Exercise for older people will help them to slow down the ageing process and also help them to keep mobile for longer. "Researchers report that men and women over the age of 60 have to lift weights more often than younger adults to maintain muscle mass and muscle size."There are also walking events and groups that are specifically designed for older people, so they aren’t too fast or in areas which would be too difficult for older people and they encourage them to get fit and active, walking classes helps people to keep their blood pressure low, improves agility and balance, helps with respiratory disorders because it improves lung capacity etc. "The Chief Health Officer recommends that all adults should do at least 30 minutes moderate exercise per day, but only around 15% of people aged over 65 are currently achieving this. Regular walking helps overcome some of the physical problems associated with getting older"http://www.movingsomersetforward.co.uk/walking/walking-all/walking-older-people
Not all old people are able to get out and do exercise frequently, this may be due to health problems or mobility issues, such as they are in a wheelchair or need help walking. Therefore these people wouldn’t be able to attend gym classes or walking groups. However there are exercises designed especially for people in wheelchairs. "If you’re a wheelchair user, it can be easy to overlook physical fitness and exercise. But getting active will bring you important health benefits and can help you manage daily life, too." http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/Disability/Pages/fitness-for-wheelchair-users.aspx Wheelchair exercises can help to keep people fit and maintain a healthy body weight. Muscle strengthening exercises can be very important for people in a wheel chair, because moving or pushing themselves around may put strain on the muscles and may cause other injuries, but my doing muscle strengthening exercises it decreases the chance of them getting these kinds of injuries.
I also agree with this theory because if older people are exercising frequently then they are more likely to have a better lifestyle and health than other older people who aren’t exercising. I also agree with the point about how being sociable when people get older can help them to age better, because if they are still meeting with their friends this may keep them feeling young. I also agree because there is proof that there are major health benefits for older people who remain fit and active in their later life.