Thequality of life of older adults is influenced by multiple factors,including the physical activities, social support, eating habits, andfaith. In most cases the quality of life of older adults isinfluenced by a combination of factors, which means that the overallwell-being is not determined by a single factor. This paper willsummarize an interview of three older adults, and focus onsimilarities as well as differences in factors that they believe havecontributed towards their social, physical, and mental stability.
of an interview with Ms. A
Ms.A is an elderly lady aged 71 years. The medical history indicatesthat Ms. A has never suffered from any serious illness. However, s.A. suffered some minor injuries (diverticulitis) at 44 years of age.Ms. A. worked as a Certified Nurse Assistance, a job that isdescribed as being strenuous and stressful. At the time of theinterview, Ms. A was a divorcee. Ms. A stayed in marriage for aperiod of 10 years, but never got married after the divorce. Ms. A’shobbies include babysitting and walking. Being sexually active andwalking about 3 miles a day are some of the factors that contributedto the physical well-being of Ms. A. In addition, socializing withgrandkids, attending family gatherings, and religious faith are someof the key social activities that have helped Ms. A. stay healthy.
of an interview with Ms. B
Ms.B is an elderly lady at the age of 70 years. From the medical historyobtained during the interview, Ms. B has never fallen ill. Ms. B.worked as a self-employed woman, a job that is described as beingstressful due a high pressure to meet deadlines, plan financeswisely, and meets the needs of customers. Ms. B retired from theprivate business at the age of 68 years. Some of Ms. B’s hobbiesinclude watching movies at the movie theater and swimming. At thetime of interview, Ms. B. was still married and has stayed inmarriage for a period of 45 years. Some of the key factors that havecontributed towards Ms. B’s good physical health include healthyeating behaviors and routine swimming classes. In addition, beingactive at work and taking part in community programs have contributedtowards Ms. B’s good social well-being. Moreover, Ms. B’s tablemental health can be attributed to active participation in familygatherings, spending time with grandchildren, and managing personalfinances.
of an interview with Ms. C
Ms.C. is an elderly lady aged 76 years at the time of interview. Ms. Csuffered from injuries at lumbar disc in the year 2002. Ms. C hasbeen a house wife, a job that is described as being less stressfuland easy to manage. The job involved taking care of the husband andthe entire family. Being a housewife implies that Ms. C. has neverretired since taking of the family is a job with no time limit.Shopping is the key hobby for Ms. C. Ms. C. was married once andremained in marriage for a period of 59 years. Ms. C. has not gottenmarried since the death of the husband about a year ago from the timeof the interview. Healthy eating habits are one of the major factorsthat have contributed towards Ms. C’s stable physical health. Inaddition, a reliable family support has played a role in Ms. C’ssocial well-being. Ms. C’s mental stability can be attributed to astrong religious faith and spiritual life.
Comparingand contrasting the three interviewees
Fromthe interview, Ms. A and Ms. B. believe that physical activities(swimming and walking) have contributed to their overall wellbeing.This is consistent with empirical studies that have shown thatphysical activities enhance the quality of life of older adults(King, 2010). Physical activities enhance the quality of life bylimited progression of disabling conditions and strengthening musclesof an older adult. In addition, physical activities enhance theimmune system of an older adult, which protects them from seriousmedical conditions.
Ms.B. and Ms. C hold that healthy eating habits have kept them healthy.This is consistent with modern research, which has shown that healthyeating protect older adults from dietary deficient and malnutritionrelated illness (Amarantos, Matinez & Dwyer, 2011). Therefore,health eating keeps older adults from chronic illnesses and enhancestheir quality of life.
Thethree ladies hold that social support, which comes from familymembers, grand children, or the community, have played a key role inenhancing the well-being and mental stability. Research has shownthat social networks, especially the networks that comes from closefamily members is most reliable source of emotional support thatkeeps the mental stability of older adults (Ahmad, 2011). Althoughspiritual faith may contributed toward mental stability as Ms. A andMs. C claims, studies have shown that spiritual life and one’sfaith becomes effective when they are accompanied by other factorssuch as social and psychological support (Jafari, Faraj, Loghmani &Majlesi, 2014).
Thequality of life of older adults is influenced by many factors. In thecase of the three older adults interviewed in the present study,their quality of life is mainly influenced by their physicalactivity, strong social support, healthy eating and religious faith.However, these factors vary from one elder to another, which meansthat the determinant of the overall quality of life depends on thekey elements that individual elder chooses to include in theirlifestyle.
Ahmad,K. (2011). Older adults’ social support and its effect on theireveryday self-maintenance activities: Findings from the householdsurvey of urban Lahore-Pakistan. AResearch Journal of South Asian Studies,26 (1), 37-52.
Amarantos,E., Matinez, A. & Dwyer, J. (2011). Nutritional and quality oflife in older adults. Journalof Gerontology,56, 54-64.
Jafari,N., Faraj, Z., Loghmani, A., & Majlesi, M. (2014). Spiritualwell-being and quality of life Iranian adults with type 2 diabetes.Evidence-basedComplementary and Alternative Medicine,1, 8.
King,C. (2010). Physical activity for an aging population. PublicHealth Reviews,32 (2), 401-426.