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  • Understand the historical and current trends of poverty among elderly populations
  • Recognize ageist thinking and ageist attitudes in individuals and in institutions
  • Learn about elderly individuals’ risks of being mistreated and abused

Aging comes with many challenges. The loss of independence is one potential part of the process, as are diminished physical ability and age discrimination. The term senescence    refers to the aging process, including biological, emotional, intellectual, social, and spiritual changes. This section discusses some of the challenges we encounter during this process.

As already observed, many older adults remain highly self-sufficient. Others require more care. Because the elderly typically no longer hold jobs, finances can be a challenge. And due to cultural misconceptions, older people can be targets of ridicule and stereotypes. The elderly face many challenges in later life, but they do not have to enter old age without dignity.

Poverty

In figure (a), an older man and woman, wearing casual dress, are shown from behind walking in a public plaza setting. In figure (b), a homeless person, dressed in shabby clothing, is shown sitting on a city sidewalk, holding a plastic cup, begging for change from passers-by.
While elderly poverty rates showed an improvement trend for decades, the 2008 recession has changed some older people’s financial futures. Some who had planned a leisurely retirement have found themselves at risk of late-age destitution. (Photo (a) courtesy of Michael Cohen/flickr; photo (b) courtesy of Alex Proimos/flickr)

For many people in the United States, growing older once meant living with less income. In 1960, almost 35 percent of the elderly existed on poverty-level incomes. A generation ago, the nation’s oldest populations had the highest risk of living in poverty.

At the start of the 21st century, the older population was putting an end to that trend. Among people over 65, the poverty rate fell from 30 percent in 1967 to 9.7 percent in 2008, well below the national average of 13.2 percent (U.S. Census Bureau 2009). However, with the subsequent recession, which severely reduced the retirement savings of many while taxing public support systems, how are the elderly affected? According to the Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured, the national poverty rate among the elderly had risen to 14 percent by 2010 (Urban Institute and Kaiser Commission 2010).

Before the recession hit, what had changed to cause a reduction in poverty among the elderly? What social patterns contributed to the shift? For several decades, a greater number of women joined the workforce. More married couples earned double incomes during their working years and saved more money for their retirement. Private employers and governments began offering better retirement programs. By 1990, senior citizens reported earning 36 percent more income on average than they did in 1980; that was five times the rate of increase for people under age 35 (U.S. Census Bureau 2009).

In addition, many people were gaining access to better health care. New trends encouraged people to live more healthful lifestyles, placing an emphasis on exercise and nutrition. There was also greater access to information about the health risks of behaviors such as cigarette smoking, alcohol consumption, and drug use. Because they were healthier, many older people continue to work past the typical retirement age, providing more opportunity to save for retirement. Will these patterns return once the recession ends? Sociologists will be watching to see. In the meantime, they are realizing the immediate impact of the recession on elderly poverty.

Questions & Answers

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ninjadapaul
20/(×-6^2)
Salomon
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ninjadapaul
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ninjadapaul
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Salomon
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Salomon
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Salomon
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ninjadapaul
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ninjadapaul
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ninjadapaul
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The answer is neither. The function, 2 = 0 cannot exist. Hence, the function is undefined.
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Kristine 2*2*2=8
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J, combine like terms 7x-4y
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I start with an easy one. carbon nanotubes woven into a long filament like a string
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AMJAD
preparation of nanomaterial
Victor Reply
Yes, Nanotechnology has a very fast field of applications and their is always something new to do with it...
Himanshu Reply
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AMJAD
what is system testing
AMJAD
what is the application of nanotechnology?
Stotaw
In this morden time nanotechnology used in many field . 1-Electronics-manufacturad IC ,RAM,MRAM,solar panel etc 2-Helth and Medical-Nanomedicine,Drug Dilivery for cancer treatment etc 3- Atomobile -MEMS, Coating on car etc. and may other field for details you can check at Google
Azam
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Prasenjit
after 100 year this will be not nanotechnology maybe this technology name will be change . maybe aftet 100 year . we work on electron lable practically about its properties and behaviour by the different instruments
Azam
name doesn't matter , whatever it will be change... I'm taking about effect on circumstances of the microscopic world
Prasenjit
how hard could it be to apply nanotechnology against viral infections such HIV or Ebola?
Damian
silver nanoparticles could handle the job?
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not now but maybe in future only AgNP maybe any other nanomaterials
Azam
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Uday
I'm interested in Nanotube
Uday
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Prasenjit
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Prasenjit Reply
At high concentrations (>0.01 M), the relation between absorptivity coefficient and absorbance is no longer linear. This is due to the electrostatic interactions between the quantum dots in close proximity. If the concentration of the solution is high, another effect that is seen is the scattering of light from the large number of quantum dots. This assumption only works at low concentrations of the analyte. Presence of stray light.
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the Beer law works very well for dilute solutions but fails for very high concentrations. why?
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Source:  OpenStax, Introduction to sociology. OpenStax CNX. Jun 12, 2012 Download for free at https://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11407/1.7
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