Anti aging guide

Physical Disability of Older People



What are the physical disability of aged people which are divided into different categories


It is now customary to divide the long-term effects of disease into three categories. Impairment is the loss or abnormality of structure or function, such as a weak leg and arm following a stroke. Disability is the resulting loss of ability to perform an activity in the normal manner, so that the stroke victim is unable to drive and has a diminished ability to walk. Handicap is the ensuing disadvantage in terms of the fulfillment of the individual’s role – in the case of someone in his 60s or 70s, this may well be in employment or leisure pursuits or possibly in charitable or committee work; in the case of someone in his 70s or 80s, the enjoyment of a varied and full life and the running of the house and garden. Here, however, we will use the term disability to embrace all these unfortunate consequences of the disease process.

The term disability is a difficult one to define. For example, it has been suggested that almost one in three people over the age of 80 is housebound. This does not necessarily mean that all these people are incapable of walking outdoors or finding their way about, although in many cases mobility and vision may be somewhat restricted. Withdrawal from the outside world often seems to be precipitated by an event which significantly alters the subject’s perception of herself so that she now regards herself as old and frail. Examples of such events include falling over in a public place, bereavement, a spell in hospital, or being mugged or merely insulted. Other factors may contribute, such as incontinence, urgency, and anxiety.

Surveys have shown that almost 14 per cent of all adults in private households in the UK have one or more disabilities, and in 44 per cent of these the degree of disability is in the more severe half of the spectrum. Almost 70 per cent of all disabled adults are aged 60 or more, and nearly half are over 70. Of those most severely affected, 41 per cent are 80 or over. More old women (75 or over) than old men are incapacitated, even allowing for the different numbers of the two genders in this age group.

In all developed countries the rate of disability rises steeply with age, and will continue to do so. The diseases, or impairments, causing these disabilities are numerous and many of them very common, although often causing little or no disability.

Posted by Carol Hudgens - March 27, 2012 at 5:42 pm