If you’re afraid of growing old, you’re not alone. In the U.S. alone, 87% of Americans said that they fear old age. And it’s not hard to see why. First off, who would want to complain about chronic pain or sore joints and muscles continually? Knowing that you’ll have to say goodbye to too many precious memories also doesn’t help. We bet you also don’t want to see that glowing skin turn wrinkly and ugly. And did we mention always looking lonely and grumpy?
All of these are inevitable parts of aging. And while there are precautions we can do to prevent the effects of aging, such as memory loss or illnesses, there’s one thing we can’t escape: death. But according to Dr. Gail Saltz, a psychiatrist and television commentator, we shouldn’t be afraid of getting older.
Our fear of growing old can stem from different anxieties. If you want to get past your concerns, it helps to nail down the things that are frightening you. Is it about losing the ones you love? Are you freaking out over the fact that you’ll wake up one day with wrinkly and ugly skin? Are you worried that you’ll stay stuck in the same position at work? Are potential illnesses making you worry more about old age?
Get better acquainted with the monsters under your bed. If you’re worried about being sick when you get older, make sure you’re on the right track when it comes to your physical and mental health. If you’re afraid of being alone in your sunset years, plan as early as today.
Given that your family members are likely to decide on your behalf when you’re no longer able to think straight, plan and let them know about your preferences. Do you prefer to live independently with the assistance of a caregiver or enter an assisted-living facility in Ogden? You can’t escape old age, but you can at least make sure you will be living a life you once wanted.
Debunk the Myths
Ever heard of the midlife crisis? If a person encounters a crisis at this age, it’s probably because they had one when they were younger. The bad news is that they are likely to continue to have them across their lifespan. Also, most cases of people struggling with life crises happen well before their midlife or their 30s.
It’s also a common misconception that it’s natural for older people to be depressed. But public opinion surveys say otherwise. It appears that older Americans are the happiest demographic. One of the reasons why this is true is that compared to younger people, older people have come to terms with the fact that death is inevitable. Because of this, they are more at ease and focus on enjoying their remaining years.
We’re all going to die, and there’s nothing we can do to stop it. But all hope is not lost for everyone. Instead of succumbing to superficial aging stress, focus on making the most out of your only shot at life.