Older Adult Therapy and Aging

Older Adult Therapy and Aging

Although getting older is an inevitable part of the human experience, we choose how we meet the tasks and challenges of aging. 

We can buy into the fantasy and perpetuate the myth that we should look, feel, and act like we’re twenty, or we can organically evolve into someone more experienced, spiritual, and masterful. 

Together, we can clear what’s getting in the way of you living your life to the fullest—whatever age you may be.

During the retirement or later years of life, many changes occur. 

Welcoming new family members, developing new hobbies and purpose, and bidding people goodbye are often overarching themes that surface during this time in life. 

They require flexibility and resiliency, and we will help you develop these skills and meet these new life tasks.


THE JOYS AND CHALLENGES OF AGING

When met with flexibility and courage, seeing our transitions as opportunities, aging and retirement can be a time of profound joy—a great adventure free from the responsibilities of raising your children and full of opportunities to explore your own interests, activities, and relationships with family and friends. 

Just as aging has its joys, so it has its struggles. 

You may experience physical changes and a decline of mental abilities—which can both be difficult adjustments that bring up sadness and frustration.  

We are here to help you to meet these challenges with tenacity, optimism, and compassion, seeing how these struggles can expand our inner landscapes and develop deep resources within.

The quality of your life during aging and retirement in part depends on your flexibility and how well you adjusted to transitions earlier in your life. 

How you care for your mind, body, and soul while you meet these challenges are also vital aspects of wellbeing. 

A common misconception is that aging automatically means we will experience poor health. 

This is not necessarily true! Many of us know seniors who are swimming, hiking, and doing yoga in their 80’s and 90’s!


DEVELOPMENTAL TASKS FOR SENIORS

Some goals and challenges you may face later in life are:

  • Developing new interests, hobbies, and ways to find purpose and meaning beyond child-rearing and work.
    • Now that you have more time on your hands, it can be the perfect time to develop new interests and hobbies. While you might have some physical limitations, we can work together to find fulfilling activities that will help you enjoy your free time to the fullest.
  • Adjusting to the physiological and mental changes you and your partner may be experiencing.
    • Older adults can experience challenges such as illnesses, dementia, or loneliness. Navigating these obstacles can be difficult, but adjusting to these changes and learning to live with them will help you lead an easier life.
  • Dealing with the loss of a partner, siblings, and friends
    • No matter when this happens, it can be devastating. It’s important to take time to process your grief, remember the memories you had, and eventually accept your loss. We are trained to help with this process.
  • Reckoning with your own mortality and regrets
    • Thinking about and accepting death can be scary. We can help you navigate and accept the uncertainties that may occur. 
  • Adjusting to changes in sexual drive and functioning and working through them with your partner
  • Providing emotional support for your adult children and extended family members
  • Providing support for the older generation while maintaining your own health and sanity by defining your limits and boundaries about how much you are able to give
  • Exploring new family and social roles
  • Reminiscing, reviewing, and reflecting on your life and all that you’ve learned and experienced
  • Ageism
    • Many older adults report discrimination due to their age. This can be in any form, from disrespect to being denied services and necessary resources. It’s important to recognize when this happens so that you can stand up for and advocate for yourself.


AGING: MENTAL HEALTH CONCERNS

As mentioned before, while aging has its positive side, there are some challenges as well. This can include anything from:

  • Anxiety
    • Some anxiety symptoms include restlessness, worry, and racing thoughts
    • See our Anxiety Therapy page to learn more about anxiety and how we can help 
  • Problems with sleep quality and insomnia
    • Sleep problems and insomnia symptoms include difficulty falling or staying asleep, feeling sleep is not restful 
    • See our Insomnia and Sleep Disorders page  to learn more about sleep issues and how we can help 
  • Depression
    • Symptoms of depression include tearfulness, lack of pleasure, apathy, and hopelessness
    • In older adults, this often goes untreated, but studies show that if you are surrounded by a community, you are less likely to experience depression.
    • See our Depression Therapy page to learn more about Depression and how we can help 


OUR THERAPY METHODS FOR AGING

Therapy can successfully improve your life by helping you minimize the anxiety in your life, identifying and changing underlying thought and behavioral patterns that contribute to your struggles, and providing you with strategies to decrease discomfort while restoring an overall sense of peace.

See the About Therapy page for a deeper look into this process. 

Our evidence-based, scientifically proven interventions are demonstrated by research to be effective in addressing struggles related to aging and a wide range of mental health issues.

Learn more about our empirically based therapy modalities by visiting our Methods page. 


WANT TO TALK? SPEAK WITH AN AGING EXPERT NOW

If you have any questions, contact one of our older adult therapy specialists for a free consultation any time.


RESOURCES

  1. Mayo Clinic
  2. WebMD
  3. GoodTherapy

Older Adults Therapy and Aging Therapists

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