People are living longer lives than ever before in history. The National Institute on Aging states that in the U.S. alone, life expectancy doubled in the 20th century. And, get this: there was also a tenfold increase in the number of Americans 65 and older. In fact, people 85 years old and over make up the fastest-growing population in this country. Want more mind-boggling news? The NIA reports that by 2050, over 1,000,000 of us could be centenarians.
Not only are we living much longer into our elderly years, but our quality of life on average during those years has greatly improved. More people over 65 are attending classes, exercising, and enjoying the same activities and active social lives that they did in their youth. They’re also watching their diets more than ever, being careful to avoid health-threatening foods. The above factors, when combined with such considerations as family genetics and modern medical and scientific breakthroughs, surely help to explain our increased longevity and vitality into our seventies, eighties, nineties and beyond.
There may be other ingredients to hitting a healthy 100 years, as well.
It has also been found that many extra-long lifers have things in common that have led to extraordinary years of health. CNN recently reported that in the region of Nicoya, Costa Rica, where the average man is more than twice as likely as an American man to reach 90 years of age, people tend to be generally less stressed about their lives than elsewhere.
Another tidbit about longevity has been uncovered, concerning faith.
Age researcher Dan Buettner shares, “People who belong to a faith-based organization – no matter which one – live on average four to 14 years longer than those who do not.”
There are some components to living extraordinarily long that are unfortunately beyond our control:
The popular news website Geobeats reports that, if you’d like to be a centenarian, it helps to be female: according to the 2010 U.S. census, 83% of Americans 100 and over were women.
Of course, all of this is great news. Throughout the world and across socio-economic, racial and cultural groups, we are living longer, healthier, more active lives than our ancestors did. But there are still complications that continue to plague many of our elderly loved ones. The NIH projects that half of all women and one-quarter of men over 50 will break a bone due to osteoporosis. Diseases such as cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s and heart disease also continue to take their toll, especially as our life expectancy increases. If you have a loved one who has lived many wonderful years, but may now be in need of care, we at 805Aging can help.
There is so much to think about when entering the later stages of life. Our professional staff specializes in assisting you to choose the right kind of care for your loved one. Be it at home or in a community, we conduct regular check-ins when you are unable to do so. 805Aging also provides oversight and detailed feedback to the family to keep your loved one safe and well-cared for day or night, weekday or weekend, holiday and everyday.
We have the resources. We can hold your hand. We can guide you. Your peace of mind is our main goal, and is well assured. To find out more, call us at 805-750-4755 or visit our website: www.805Aging.com.
There is no manual on how to take care of your parents when they can’t take care of themselves. They had a baby book when you were young. You have us. You’re not alone… and neither are your parents. -Amy