National League of NursingNational League of Nursing

The Voice of Nursing Education

Individualized Aging

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Individualized Aging

Since the aging process is manifested uniquely by each individual, assessing function and expectations of care is essential.

The term “normal aging” may lead to the belief that there is a typical way for older adults to age, both behaviorally and physiologically. Older adults living in a wide variety of settings represent a broad spectrum of strengths, resources, needs, wishes, and expectations.

Functional status assessment utilizing standardized tools, such as the How to Try This® Series and communication techniques to recognize, respond to, and respect older adults’ and caregivers’ expectations regarding outcomes of care, create a way to frame aging differently and to foster relationship-centered care. 

End-of-life care includes comfort management, honest communication, coordination of care, and profound respect for the preferences of older adults or caregivers to affirm the uniqueness of each person’s life.