Fear of aging is something that is woven tightly into the fabric of our society. For me, it’s about not being able to do the things I love. And…there’s that face that stares back at me in the mirror. Bottom line, aging is change that may have a huge impact on our lives. I do believe, however, we don’t have to let it steal the joy of living in the present. It helps to face any fear you may have now and find a way to embrace it. Let’s talk about it! Here are 4 common fears associated with aging.
Common Fears Associated with Aging #1: Loss of Beauty
The fear of aging or gerascophobia is actually a driving force behind the development and marketing of many products. “Use this and you will reverse signs of aging” or “Take off ten years with this miracle creme.” You can see where I’m going with this. A natural and even wonderful process of aging is being used by companies to make billions of dollars each year. I think we need a shift in our culture. In fact, studies have concluded that your 60s are likely to be the happiest decade of your life. If this is true, so what if we have some wrinkles and gray hair!
Common Fears Associated with Aging #2: Dementia and Cognitive Problems
So many people assume that, no matter what they do, they will experience dementia and mental cognition difficulties as they age. This is one of the foremost reasons our society fears aging. Well, the simple fact is that dementia is not inevitable, and it doesn’t affect everyone. There are many factors involved with the onset of dementia, including genetics, diet, activity level, and general health. You can also lower your risk by staying physically and mentally fit while you are young. In other words, live your life as healthfully as possible and it will make a difference later on.
Common Fears Associated with Aging #3: Loss of Senses
It’s no myth that eyesight and hearing tend to deteriorate with age. And, when it happens, it’s frustrating and even a little scary. It also promotes thoughts that it will just get worse from there as you age. Truthfully, it might get worse…or it might not. It’s a natural occurrence that you will have to deal with as it comes. The good news is that with help from devices like hearing aids and corrective eyewear, we can continue to sense the world around us. Also, make sure to take care of your senses in your youth. Regular checkups will help to identify any potential problems you might face in the future.
Common Fears Associated with Aging #4: Social Isolation
There’s no denying that loneliness can be an issue for older members of society. As friends pass away and family comes around less, many in their later years find themselves increasingly isolated. Just as with people of any age, doing something about it is the best way to combat isolation.
Getting older doesn’t mean that we have to stop having fun and socializing with others. In fact, it’s even more important to keep these things in our lives as we age. Joining clubs, social groups, gyms and getting out of the house period are all positive steps to keeping a healthy social life at any age.
Getting older is inevitable, but that doesn’t mean that the later years of your life have to be miserable. Try to focus on the moment, live in the present, and acknowledge that you have nothing to fear from the future.