Divorce, cohabitation, remarriage, serial romantic partnerships, and living apart together have been relatively common among these older age groups. Stepfamily research has expanded in recent decades, but most of the focus has been on younger stepfamilies, with primary emphasis placed on relationships between stepparents and stepchildren or remarried spouses. Initially, Ganong and Coleman identified three structural pathways to becoming a stepgrandparent: a younger adult could (re)marry a parent with young children or adolescents who would grow up to become parents themselves as adults; an older adult could (re)marry a grandparent; and an older individual’s adult child could (re)marry a person who brings to the union children from a prior relationship. Given that parents often tend to mediate the relationships among grandparents and grandchildren, it is not surprising that parents’ divorce affects grandparent–grandchild relationships. It is somewhat surprising that few researchers have examined divorce by grandparents.
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This chapter provides an overview of delirium and dementia, including primary dementias, secondary dementias, and reversible dementias. The distinction between mild and major neurocognitive disorders is described. An in-depth description of Alzheimer’s disease, including etiology, treatment, and general guidelines for care, is included. Other dementias including Huntington’s disease, frontotemporal lobar degeneration, Lewy body disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, and vascular dementia are also briefly covered. Secondary dementias (e.g., dementia associated with Parkinson’s disease) and reversible dementias (e.g., normal pressure hydrocephalus) conclude the chapter.
Despite the growing attention in the literature addressing the experiences of lesbian, bisexual, gay, transgender (LBGT) youth and family acceptance, few researchers are examining these experiences in the relational context of being a grandchild or how grandparent–grandchild relationships enhance or hinder LGBT grandchildren’s experiences, especially when grandchildren disclose their sexual orientation to grandparents. This chapter discusses the important theoretical lenses used to understand and aids the study of LGB grandparenthood and reviews the literature on LGB grandparenthood and when grandchildren identify as lesbian, bisexual, gay, transgender, and queer (LBGTQ). Perhaps more importantly to the advancement of the literature on LGB grandparenting, the chapter provides recommendations for future research on grandparenthood in the context of sexual orientation, and hopes that discussion is a call to action for family scientists, gerontologists, psychologists, and sociologists to closely examine grandparenthood when grandparents, grandchildren, or grandchildren’s parents identify as LGBTQ.
An overview of the gastrointestinal system as it relates to the nutritional status of the older individual is presented. The anatomy and physiology and age-related changes of the system are reviewed. Selected common age-related disorders are discussed along with their incidence, presenting symptoms, diagnostic measures, and interventions. The American Cancer Society’s 2020 screening recommendations for the intestines are then outlined.
An overview of the anatomy, physiology, and functioning of the respiratory system is provided. Age-related changes in the respiratory system along with selected specific disorders commonly experienced by older adults and measures useful in preventing and living with respiratory dysfunctions are explained.
This book brings together the work of experts from a variety of fields such as adult development, adult education, family science, family therapy and counseling, gerontology, psychology, social work, and sociology. It is organized into four sections, each of which contains chapters reflecting a given theme as it pertains to grandparenting. Section one explores the breadth of the grandparent role from multiple theoretical perspectives, explores both quantitative and qualitative research methodologies in the study of grandparenting. It examines cohort effects and emphasizes the multigenerational developmental contexts in which grandparents and grandchildren are situated. In addition, it presents variations on grandparenting: grandfathers, great-grandparenting, and step-grandparents. Section two focuses on the diversity among grandparents, examining such issues as variations in sexual orientation in such persons, grandparents who are raising their grandchildren, and changing gender roles among grandparents. Section three examines the difficulties and challenges that grandparents face in enacting their roles as well as the resources and strengths they bring to bear. It discusses the impact of having to cope with both acute and chronic illness on intergenerational relationships, the design and implementation of interventions to positively affect emotional functioning. It discusses the clinical case study approaches to helping grandparents, resilience and resourcefulness in the face of stress. Section four emphasizes the societal and cultural aspects of grandparenting, exploring issues of race and ethnicity, grandparent education, global grandparenting, and many dimensions of social policy as they relate to grandparents. The last chapter pulls the material together in presenting a multidimensional, multileveled, and dynamic picture of grandparenting stressing the influence of evolving historical and interpersonal contexts on such persons and their grandchildren. It also offers suggestions for future research over the next two decades.
Significance of changes in biological, psychological, and social aging and their impact on lessened reserve capacity; the importance of understanding slowness, stress, pacing, and accidents in working with older adults; and the role of health promotion, disease prevention, and health maintenance in successful aging conclude the chapter.
An overview of the anatomy, physiology, and function of the urinary system and age-related changes is provided. Selective disorders common in older adults with description and common symptoms are discussed. Useful diagnostic procedures and treatments frequently prescribed to maintain urinary health in older age were elaborated.
Adult education is available in many communities. These opportunities are welcome, although courses rarely focus on family relationships, the topic that has the highest priority among grandparents. An intergenerational strategy is lacking that would allow parents of grandchildren, and the grandchildren, to identify content they think could help grandparents understand younger relatives. This chapter describes the origins of grandparent education and a measurement tool that allows three generations to evaluate strengths, learning needs, and growth of grandparents. It briefly describes an inclusive plan to ensure grandparents living in care facilities have access to instruction, feedback on learning, and opportunity to engage in community service. The chapter respects for cultural differences based on identification of curriculum themes that match the uniqueness of particular populations. It provides a revised emphasis for adult education that focuses on family relationships, the topic with highest priority among grandparents.
Health promotion, exercise, and the need to focus on these to enhance a healthy long life are discussed. Identification of significant areas of health promotion and barriers to achieving good health are presented. Next, disease prevention along with primary, secondary, tertiary, and quaternary preventive measures are listed. Healthy People 2030, the fifth national health initiative, and its objectives are outlined along with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Exercise, its meaning, and value in modifying age-related changes are briefed. Types of exercise programs; isometric, isotonic, and aerobic and their recommended use by older adults are listed.