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Young and Middle Adult, Older Adult


Young and Middle Adult, Older Adult YOUNG ADULT Physical growth stabilizes during young adulthood (the developmental stage from the ages of 21 to approximately 40 years). – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Young and Middle Adult, Older Adult

Young and Middle Adult, Older Adult
  • Physical growth stabilizes during young adulthood
    (the developmental stage from the ages of 21 to
    approximately 40 years). The young adult
    continues to experience physical and emotional
    changes at a slower rate than adolescents.
  • Young adulthood is a time of transition from an
    adolescent to a person capable of assuming adult
    responsibilities and making adult decisions.

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Pregnancy, a time of transition and lifestyle
adjustment, is experienced by many young women
Nursing Implications
  • Usually, young adulthood is the healthiest time
    in a persons life. Consequently, concern for
    health is low among people in this age group and
    wellness is taken for granted by many young
    adults. Preventive measures for young adults
    focus on two primary areas
  • 1. Avoidance of accident, injury, and violence
  • 2. Development of health-promoting behaviors.
  • The nurse plays an important role in each of
    these areas of health promotion by teaching and
    counseling. Other topics that are developmentally
    appropriate for the nurse to address are
    vocational counseling and establishing

Wellness Promotion
  • Decision making by young adults affects their
    health status. Since young adults tend to take
    excessive risks, they are at greater risk for
    death from accident, suicide, or homicide
    (Edelman Mandle, 1997). For example,driving
    recklessly, driving while intoxicated, engaging
    in unprotected sex, and participating in gang
    activities are examples of the lack of a sense of
    fear demonstrated by many young adults.

Sexually transmitted disease
  • Sexually transmitted disease is a leading cause
    of Infection with resultant reproductive
    dysfunction in young adults. The information
    presented about STDs in the discussion of safety
    considerations for adolescents is also applicable
    to young adults. Nurses should teach women how to
    perform a monthly breast self-examination (BSE).
    Men need to learn how to perform a testicular
    self-examination (TSE).

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  • Gonorrhea is a bacterial infection caused by the
    organism Neisseria gonorrheae (also known as
    gonococcus bacteriae) that is transmitted by
    sexual contact. Gonorrhea is one of the oldest
    known sexually transmitted diseases. It is
    estimated that over one million women are
    currently infected with gonorrhea. Among women
    who are infected, 25-40 also will be infected
    with chlamydia, another type of bacteria that
    causes another STD. (Chlamydia infection is
    discussed later in this article.)

  • Chlamydia (Chlamydia trachomatis) is a bacterium
    that causes an infection that is very similar to
    gonorrhea in the way that it is spread and the
    symptoms it produces. It is common and affects
    approximately 4 million women annually. Like
    gonorrhea, the chlamydia bacterium is found in
    the cervix and urethra and can live in the throat
    or rectum. Both infected men and infected women
    frequently lack symptoms of chlamydia infection.
    Thus, these individuals can unknowingly spread
    the infection to others. Another strain (type) of
    Chlamydia trachomatis, which can be distinguished
    in specialized laboratories, causes the STD known
    as lymphogranuloma venereum

  • Syphilis is an STD that has been around for
    centuries. It is caused by a bacterial organism
    called a spirochete. The scientific name for the
    organism is Treponema pallidum. The spirochete is
    a wormlike, spiral-shaped organism that wiggles
    vigorously when viewed under a microscope. It
    infects the person by burrowing into the moist,
    mucous-covered lining of the mouth or genitals.
    The spirochete produces a classic, painless ulcer
    known as a chancre.

  • Genital herpes, also commonly called "herpes," is
    a viral infection by the herpes simplex virus
    (HSV) that is transmitted through intimate
    contact with the mucous-covered linings of the
    mouth or the vagina or the genital skin. The
    virus enters the linings or skin through
    microscopic tears. Once inside, the virus travels
    to the nerve roots near the spinal cord and
    settles there permanently.

Safety Considerations
  • Because vehicular accidents are a major cause of
    health problems for young adults, providing
    information about driving safety is a must.
    Another activity that poses a health risk for
    many young adults is sunbathing. Exposure to
    direct sunlight with the resultant radiation or
    use of tanning salons is directly linked to skin
    cancer. Nurses can be influential in decreasing
    the occurence of skin cancer through teaching and
    by role modeling safe behaviors.

  • Middle adulthood (the developmental stage from
    the ages of 40 to 65 years) is characterized by
    productivity and responsibility. For most
    middle-aged adults, the majority of activity
    revolves around work and parenting, and success
    and achievement are measured in terms of career
    accomplishments and family life.
  • Physiological changes that affect many of the
    body systems occur during middle adulthood.

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  • When an individual successfully resolves this
    developmental conflict, acceptance of age-related
    changes occurs. Achievement of the developmental
    task is indicated by the following
  • Demonstrating creativity
  • Guiding the next generation
  • Establishing lasting relationships
  • Evaluating goals in terms of achievement
  • The evaluation of goals often leads to a midlife
    crisis, especially if individuals feel they have
    accomplished little or not lived up to earlier

Nursing Implications
  • A large proportion of the United States
    population consists of middle-aged adults
    (Edelman Mandle, 1997). Individuals of the
    baby-boom generation have entered their midlife
    stage and will require more nursing care to
    maintain wellness and cope with illness.
  • Nurses have the opportunity to help middle-aged
    clients improve their health status (and thus
    quality of life) by identification of risk
    factors and early intervention. The major risk
    factors for adults in the middle years can be
    changed because they are primarily environmental
    and behavioral. Assisting the middle-aged client
    to change unhealthy behaviors can be done through
    one-to-one intervention or in group settings.

Wellness Promotion
  • As health educators, nurses can encourage
    middle-aged adults to assume more responsibility
    for their own health Self-care education topics
    appropriate for the middle-aged adult include
  • Acceptance of aging
  • Nutrition
  • Exercise and weight control
  • Substance abuse prevention
  • Stress management
  • Recommendations for health screening
    (cholesterol screening, prostate examination,
    mammogram, Papanicolaou

Safety Considerations
  • Automobile accidents, especially those involving
    the use of alcohol, are a serious health problem
    for middle-aged adults. Another significant
    problem is occupational health hazards such as
    exposure to environmental toxins. Middle
    adulthood is also the time when a lifelong
    accumulation of unhealthy lifestyle practices,
    such as smoking, sedentary habits, inadequate
    nutrition, and overuse of alcohol, begins to
    exert adverse effects.
  • Most middle-aged individuals have increased
    leisure time. Consequently, there is an increased
    risk for recreational accidents, such as, boating
    accidents, sports related injuries, and jogging

  • Older adulthood is the developmental stage
    occurring from age 65 and beyond. Therefore, this
    section only highlights the concepts of growth
    and development as they relate to the older adult.

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Nursing Implications
  • Professional nursing care is important in
    assisting aging people to develop a sense of
    well-being (Eliopoulos, 1996). Nurses who work
    with the elderly must be especially sensitive to
    their own feelings, attitudes, and beliefs about
    aging and be aware of the effect of these
    responses on their care of older clients.
  • When assessing the older adult for health-related
    needs, the nurse needs to learn about the
    clients background, family history, work
    history, hobbies, and achievements

  • Clients should be encouraged to talk about their
    life experiences. When planning care, it is
    important to build on the clients lifelong
    interests. By recognizing each clients unique
    experiences and assets, the nurse is more likely
    to individualize care.
  • When clients express dissatisfaction and regrets
    about the past, the nurse should listen in a
    nonjudgmental manner and avoid trying to convince
    them that things are really better than they
    remember or perceive. It is important, however,
    to help clients put disappoint ments into
    perspective by balancing them with
    accomplishments and achievements. Nurses should
    encourage families to engage in a positive life
    review with elderly clients. Most nursing
    interventions for the elderly center around
    introspection and reflection on their lives.
  • Life review (or reminiscence therapy) promotes a
    positive self-concept in older people

Wellness Promotion
  • Health promotion activities should be implemented
    with the elderly to maintain functional
  • Health promotion activities are aimed at
    maximizing the elders abilities and strengths.
    Specific topics that are developmentally
    appropriate for older clients are
  • use of leisure time, increased socialization,
    engaging inregular physical activity, maintaining
    a positive mental attitude, and developing and
    maintaining healthy lifestyles.

  • Growth is the quantitative changes in physical
    size of the body and its parts.
  • Development refers to behavioral changes in
    functional abilities and skills.
  • Maturation is the process of becoming fully grown
    and developed and involves both physiological and
    behavioral aspects of an individual.
  • During each developmental stage, certain
    developmental tasks must be achieved for normal
    development to occur.
  • Growth and development of an individual are
    influenced by a combination of factors, including
    heredity, life experiences, health status, and
    cultural expectations.

  • Piagets theory states there are four stages of
    cognitive development sensorimotor,
    preoperational, concrete operations, and formal
    operations. Each stage is characterized by the
    ways in which the child interprets and uses the
  • Kohlbergs theory describes six stages of moral
    development through which individuals determine
    amoral code to guide their behavior.
  • Gilligan states that womens moral judgment
    revolves around three issues a concern with
    survival, a focus on goodness, and an
    understanding of others need for care.
  • Fowlers theory states that there are six
    distinct stages of faith development and, even
    though individuals will vary in the age at which
    they experience each stage, the sequence of
    stages remains the same.
  • Providing care to the whole person is a basic
    concept of professional nurses, and knowledge of
    growth and development concepts guides holistic
    care of clients.

  • According to Freud, certain developmental tasks
    must be achieved at each developmental stage
    failure to achieve or a delay in achieving the
    developmental task results in a fixation at a
    previous stage.
  • Erikson stated that psychosocial development is
    a series of conflicts that occur during eight
    stages of life.
  • Sullivan stated that personality development is
    strongly influenced by interpersonal
  • The stages of the life cycle are the prenatal,
    neonate, infant, toddler, preschooler, school-age
    child, preadolescent, adolescent, young adult,
    middle adult, and older adult.
  • Nurses have important roles in promoting the
    health and safety of individuals at each stage of
    the life cycle.

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