FRHD*1010 Chapter 12

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University of Guelph
Family Relations and Human Development
FRHD 1010
Susan Chuang

FRHD*1010 th – nd October 27 November 2 2013 Chapter 12: Adulthood – Body & Mind Senescence Senesce: A gradual physical decline related to ageing  Occurs in everyone & every body part but the rate of decline is highly variable between people The Experience of Aging  Typically 30-65 year olds feel 5-10 years younger than their chronological age  At least 3 aspects of body functioning protects adults from recognizing senescence 1. Organ Reserve: The extra capacity built into each organ, such as the heart & lungs that allows a person to cope w/ extraordinary demands or to withstand organ strain  This reserve power decreases each year  People rarely need to draw on it 2. Homeostasis: The adjustment of all the body’s systems t keep physiological functions in a state of equilibrium, moment by moment  As the body ages, it takes longer for homeostatic adjustments to occur so it is harder for older bodies to adapt to stress 3. Allostasis: A dynamic body adjustment (related to homeostasis) that over time affects overall physiology. The main difference is while homeostasis requires an immediate response, allostasis requires longer-term adjustment Sex & Fertility  Arousal, orgasm, fertility and menopause are all affected by age w/ impact dependent on culture Sexual Responsiveness  Sexual arousal occurs slower w/ age and orgasm takes longer  Slowdowns are counterbalanced by less anxiety, longer lovemaking & better communication Reproduction Infertility: The inability to conceive a child after trying for at least a year  Fertility peaks in late teens & early 20s  For 1/3 of infertile couples, the primary source of the problem is the man; for another 1/3 its for the woman for the final 1/3 its uncertain  Common reason for infertility is low sperm count  In most men about 100M sperm reach maturity each day after about 75 days of development  Anything that impairs body-functioning over that 75-day period e.g. Fever, radiation, drugs, smoking, sauna stress etc. can reduce sperm #, shape and motility & make conception harder  Men over 45 take 5x as long to impregnate a woman as men younger than 25  Pollution, stress, STIs e.g. Reduce sperm  Female fertility also impaired by anything that impairs physical functioning including disease, smoking, dieting, obesity  Age slows down every step of female reproduction Culture & Infertility  In some nations a women isn’t considered truly female until she bears a child  In other nations, being childless (e.g. Germany) by choice is accepted or even admired  In the U.S approx... 15% of all adult couples are infertile  In U.S approx. 15% of adult couples choose to be childless  Birth rates declined everywhere in recent years Fertility Restored  In past 40 years medical advances have solved approx. half of fertility problems 1  Surgery can repair male or female reproductive systems and assisted reproductive technology (ART) helps many couples overcome various fertility obstacles In vitro fertilization (IVF): A technique n which ova (egg cells) is surgically removed from women and fertilize egg w/ sperm in a laboratory. After original fertilized cells (the zygotes) have divided several times, they are inserted into the woman’s uterus.  Most don't implant and grow but some do  Only about 40% of all IVF cycles result in successful births even when women are healthy normal weight & younger than 30  Other methods include artificial insemination, donor ova/donor wombs etc., The Aging Brain  Brain also slows w/ age  Neurons fire slower, messages sent from 1 axon are not picked up as quick by dendrites of other neurons etc.  Multitasking becomes harder, processing takes longer  If severe brain loss occurs before adulthood, the cause is not normal senescence but one of either:  Drug abuse  Poor circulation  Viruses  Genes Physical Appearance Skin & Hair  1 visible changes of ageing are skin which becomes dryer & rougher  Collagen decreases by about 1% every year after age 20  Skinner becomes thinner & less flexible; cells just beneath the surface are more visible; winkles appear, particularly around the eyes  Diet has an effect (fat slows down wrinkling)  By age 60 all faces are wrinkled  Hair turns grey & thins 1 at the temples by age 40 then over rest of scalp  Unwanted hair may appear on chin, inside nose etc. Shape & Agility  Body also changes shape between 25-65  Waist circumference increases; muscles weaken; pockets of fat settle on abs, upper arms, buttocks & chin  By late middle age, back muscles, connective tissues & bones lose density, making the vertebrae up the spine shrink  People lose about an inch of height by 65  Agility decreased  Joints lose flexibility; stiffness is more evident and bending is harder Declining Hormones  Over decades of adulthood the level of hormones in the bloodstream decreases, altering sleep patterns, appetite & the appearance changes Menopause Menopause: The time in middle age, usually around 50, when a woman’s menstrual periods cease & production of estrogen, progesterone & testosterone drops.  Dated 1 year after a women’s last menstrual period, although many months before & after are considered part of menopause period  Genes important factor  Hysterectomy (removal of uterus) usually includes removal of the ovaries which causes sudden menopause if a woman hasn't already experienced it  About ¼ US women have a hysterectomy 2  Common menopause symptoms are disturbances of body temperature – hot flashes, hot flushes (looking hot), and cold sweats  Vary by ethnicity  Some become depressed Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT): Taking hormones (in pills, patches, injections) to compensate for hormone reduction  More common in women at menopause or after removal of the ovaries, but it is also used by men to help restore their decreased testosterone level  Some medical uses but also carries health risks  Heart disease, strokes, and dementia occurred les soften w/ estrogen which prompted women to use HRT for decades  Now opposite is found Andropause?  Hormone replacement for men is likewise controversial Andropause: A term coined to signify a drop in testosterone levels in older men, which normally results in reduced sexual desire, reactions & muscle mass  Sexual inactivity and anxiety cause a reduction in testosterone – a phenomenon similar to menopause but w/ a psychological not physiological, cause  Some men combat testosterone decline w/ HRT  Widespread use isn’t recommended Health Habits & Age  Each person’s routines of daily life affect their susceptibility to every disease and chronic condition  Cancer is the leading cause of death of people aged 25-65  People can cut in half their overall morbidity and mortality during adulthood if they have healthy habits  Morbidity = disease while mortality = death Tobacco & Alcohol  Cancer deaths reflect smoking patterns of years earlier  Without cancer, long-term effects of smoking include reduced oxygen intake and thus lower vitality  Cancer deaths decreasing in most developed nations  Harm from smoking is dose-related  Alcohol can be beneficial in moderation  Alcohol decreases coronary heart disease and strokes  Increases HDL the “good” form of cholesterol and reduced LDL  Lowers blood pressure and glucose  Obsessive drinkers are at risk  destroys brain cells, contributes to osteoporosis, decreases fertility, accompanies many suicides, homicides and accidents  Destroys families, increases risk of 60+ diseases etc. Overeating  Metabolism decreases by 1/3 betwe
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