Late Adulthood: Stage of Life

Late adulthood, perhaps, can be called the most controversial stage in human life. People in this period of life are full of knowledge and experience but practically do not have the opportunity to realize them. In addition, there is a double attitude in society towards older people. Although they are deservedly considered wise, they are often compared to children because of their helplessness and the help and care they need. Thus, the elderly face a massive number of challenges and contradictions every day. The purpose of this reflection paper is to highlight the main problematic points related to human development in late adulthood and discuss their importance.

Contact with late adulthood and the problems of this age is inevitable for all of us. At the same time, people have to face such difficulties long before their own aging. I am a confirmation of this example because I have an elderly mother. She is currently 89 years old, and, unfortunately, the effects of aging are beginning to affect her little by little. As is usually the case with this process, her health becomes increasingly fragile, and her memory and cognitive abilities slowly decline (Berk, 2018).

Every day she needs more help, currently implemented by special home aid services daily with my support at a distance. Such measures can make a person’s life somewhat easier, but they cannot radically change the situation. Analyzing the state of my mother, I understand how important the environment and the environment in which a person is.

Therefore, one of the main problems I would like to draw attention to is the conditions in which people live in late adulthood. Often, living conditions in a particular apartment do not meet the basic requirements. At the same time, studies show that people living in cleaner environmental conditions, having access to physical activity and quality nutrition, can live much longer and can even be cured of severe diseases (Buettner, 2012). Therefore, in my opinion, it is the environment of older people that needs to be paid the most attention. Older adults are often not very picky and can out of habit exist even in those conditions in which no adult would be. Significant coverage of this problem will allow foster respect for themselves and their old age in current adults and help the elderly change their lives for the better.

One of the potential solutions, in this case, is the cohabitation of children and their parents. Although there is a tendency toward nuclear families, this behavior has serious negative consequences for the elderly. First of all, they are associated with the lack of any care for them. Even home aid services are not a complete solution, since it does not solve the second component of the problem. It is loneliness, a compelling factor that is often stigmatized and therefore not discussed (Gorman, 2017).

Since the circle of communication and acquaintances of people gradually decreases with age, loneliness is a widespread phenomenon that can lead to poor health. In the context of older people who already have medical conditions, such as those with dementia, lack of contact with loved ones can significantly reduce the quality of life (Planos, 2014). However, these theses are valid in the opposite direction.

As practice shows, quality caregiving and socialization are essential at this age. Studies have shown that caring for a patient can significantly reduce feelings of loneliness, as people will feel their worth to others (Iecovich, 2016). That is why various home aid services are a partial solution to the problem. In turn, fewer feelings of loneliness are associated with better physical, cognitive and emotional well-being. That is why, from my point of view, caring for the older generation is another problem that needs to be addressed. The fact that people cannot physically provide for themselves on their own does not deprive them of the right to have a high quality of life. Since this rule is valid for children, it should also be true for the older generation.

Finally, caring for the elderly is associated with another problem that requires attention – end-of-life care. Unfortunately, despite the absence of stigma, almost a third of people do not discuss this issue in their families (Peterson et al., 2019). This attitude is understandable since people do not like to think about death as such. However, they often are not afraid of death itself, but the suffering that follows it, the state of helplessness and pain (Miller, 2015).

Nevertheless, late adulthood does not have to be associated with sorrow and fear. Such a perception of this natural process is related to a lack of care for the elderly, which would allow them to live their last years in comfort. That is why this problem is closely related to the previous one and follows from it. Aging and death do not have to be associated with wilting, despite physical and cognitive characteristics deterioration. It is in the power of adults to change their attitude towards this phenomenon, thereby guaranteeing a comfortable old age for themselves and those around them.

Thus, from my point of view, there are three main problems associated with late adulthood. First of all, many older people live in insufficiently comfortable conditions, which are often even harmful. The next problem follows from the previous one and lies in the widespread loneliness among the elderly, while the number of their social interactions is decreasing. Finally, the assistance given to the elderly should be provided to them until the very end, and palliative care should be critical in late adulthood. All these problems are acute in modern society, but attitudes towards them can be changed through joint efforts at both the personal and social levels.


Berk, L.E. (2018). Exploring lifespan development (4th ed.). Pearson.

Buettner, D. (2012). The island where people forget to die. The New York Times Magazine. Web.

Gorman, A. (2017). Easing old people’s loneliness can help keep them healthy. NPR. Web.

Iecovich, E. (2016). Do caregiving burden and satisfaction predict loneliness in older care recipients? Aging & Mental Health, 20(4), 441-449. Web.

Miller, B.J. (2015). What really matters at the end of life. TED. Web.

Planos, J. (2014). The Dutch village where everyone has dementia. The Atlantic. Web.

Peterson, L. J., Hyer, K., Meng, H., Dobbs, D., Gamaldo, A., & O’Neil, K. (2019). Discussing end-of-life care preferences with family: Role of race and ethnicity. Research on Aging, 41(9), 823-844. Web.

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PsychologyWriting. 2023. "Late Adulthood: Stage of Life." September 21, 2023.

1. PsychologyWriting. "Late Adulthood: Stage of Life." September 21, 2023.


PsychologyWriting. "Late Adulthood: Stage of Life." September 21, 2023.