Posted: September 4th, 2022

two discussion replies (150 words for each)

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Discussion Thread: Successful Aging

            If smoking, heavy drinking, physical inactivity, depression, social isolation, and fair or poor perceived health contribute to disability in some way as you age (Cavanaugh & Blanchard-Fields, 2018), then non-government entities, such as friends, family, and church, need to address these concerns. However, non-government entities need to first know and understand their group and any possible socioeconomic factors that may be present, so they are able to offer the appropriate intervention and prevention programs (Cavanaugh & Blanchard-Fields, 2018). For example, a church offering Christian-based help to a group of Muslims will not be fruitful. Once the socioeconomic factors of the group are realized, then non-government entities can then begin to offer help.

            One such example of help a non-government entity might offer is group physical activities. This can be weekly, or more often, physical activities in a group setting, such as playing a sport, or a less demanding activity such as a light walk or hike, in a group environment. This helps ensure older adults maintain good health and functionality, while also preventing depression and social isolation. This can be offered through a non-profit organization, a church, or even just a group of friends and/or family getting together often and doing physical activities together.

            Another way a non-government entity, especially family or friends, can help older adults maintain good health and functionality is through constant gracious and positive communication and conversation. Scripture says, “Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body.” (English Standard Version Bible,
 2001, Proverbs 16:24). Gracious conversation is uplifting both spiritually and physically. These conversations can also be used to encourage the older adult to maintain a healthy lifestyle, stay active, and keep up with regular doctor visits. The greatest advantage of constant and gracious conversation between friends and family is that socioeconomic factors should pose little or no issues.


Cavanaugh, J. C., & Blanchard-Fields, F. (2018). Adult development and aging. Cengage Learning.

English Standard Version Bible. (2001). ESV Online.



Discussion reply 1 (Kat)

As people age, many individuals find themselves struggling with disability as the enter into later adulthood. The government often reacts in a way to help these individuals avoid disability; however, there are also methods where individuals, families, and churches in the community can address these issues and help older adults maintain their health and functionality into older age. In communities, families, and individuals, there are examples of both risk and protective factors related to disability. For example, services like medication, physical environment supports like wheelchair ramps, or social support services like Meals on Wheels are examples of ways a community can  help people maintain their independence into older age (Cavanaugh & Blanchard-Fields, 2019). However, families can also help by placing wheelchair ramps in homes with stairs that help them maintain functionality in their home rather than having to move into assisted living situations. Churches can also create social groups or mixers for the older adults in their congregation, which can help them maintain community into their old age. Additionally, churches can set up “Adopt-a-Grandparent” programs where older aged individuals who don’t have family are adopted by other families who then act as family to those older individuals. This provides the older individuals with people who they can share life with, and people who are looking out for them. These people can also help frail older adults who need more assistance with everyday tasks. It could be helpful for churches to set up programs where people check in with the older members of their congregation and do odd-jobs, like cleaning gutters, etc., that these individuals can no longer do for themselves. This gives the older adults the independence they want while helping them and ensuring they maintain functionality. These are just a few examples of ways the church, family, and individuals can intervene to help maintain good health and functionality into old age. 


Cavanaugh, J., & Blanchard-Fields, F. (2019). Adult Development and Aging (8th ed). Cengage Learning, Inc. 

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