Understanding Old-Age Vulnerabilities

Understanding Old-Age Vulnerabilities

To understand the risks the old face as a population, it is essential to find out the concept of vulnerability. Older persons are vulnerable for a variety of reasons. They have mental or physical impairments that make it hard for them to take care of themselves. The elderly also have a weak immune system that makes them susceptible to disease and infections. Older people do have access to transportation, and others choose not to drive. Some older adults do not like voicing out their difficulties, and this makes it problematic when one is trying to intervene. If taken to shelters, older adults need a special diet that is sensitive to their needs. These, among others, are factors that help to highlight the risks that older adults face. 

The importance of these risks is that they help us to understand the experiences that the old face and how to reduce them. For the coming generations of the elderly, it is essential to enhance individual capabilities throughout one’s life. To attain this goal, human development should pay attention to people empowering by emphasizing on the need for lifelong health, education as well as training. It will enable people to continue to promote their personal development. There is also the need for society to build on personal resilience by providing age-appropriate environments for the elderly. There should be social infrastructure put in place to cater for physical safety, social connectedness, civic freedom and access to public services such as transportation. Social protection is also critical in the elderly population as it helps to give them a sense of security. The government should also consider country-level economic development that improves the lives of the elderly.


Kruse, A., & Schmitt, E. (2015). Shared responsibility and civic engagement in ancient age. 

Research in Human Development, 12(1-2), 133-148.

Sarvimäki, Anneli, and Bettina Stenbock-Hult. “The meaning of vulnerability to older persons.” 

Nursing Ethics 23.4 (2016): 372-383.

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