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It is Perfectly Conceivable That an Elderly Gentleman Doesn't Need a Walking Cane

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When someone mentions the elderly or old people, many of you might picture an old woman or old man bent over, shuffling along the street with a walking cane. This, however, is a stereotype and does not necessarily reflect what the elderly represent. That is, it is perfectly conceivable that an elderly gentleman doesn't walk with a cane, nor does he shuffle when walking or walks hunched over.

The notion that our older population is a group of people who spend their days shuffling around our streets hunched over and kept upright with a cane is ridiculous. As is the notion that older people eat dinner at three in the afternoon, go to bed and 7:30 and drive 20 miles-per-hour in the left lane.

Sure, it happens, you will run across an elderly man or woman doing well under the speed limit and some of them to go to bed at 7:30, but this does not represent the majority.

Here are a few other stereotypes that are more myth than fact.

Myth #1

All older people do is sit around all day and watch television and sleep.

The truth of the matter is that many older adults have several interests, including hobbies, sports activities and education. Many of them stay rather active and some actually get less sleep than younger adults.

Myth #2

Older adults who still work take a lot of time off due to illness and are rather inefficient in what they do.

The fact is that older Americans who work are extremely productive and are rarely absent. There are no doubt elderly men and women out there who could work circles around people half their age without even breaking a sweat.

Myth #3

Older people are depressed and lonely.

This is just flat out wrong. Many older people have family and friends and are very happy and satisfied with their lives.

Myth #4

Older adults aren’t interested in the opposite sex.

When younger people think about older people and sex, they scrunch their faces in disgust. The fact is that older folks have the same needs as younger people and that doesn’t change with age.

Myth #5

Older people are obsessed with death.

How morbid. There are younger people who don’t talk to their elders because they fear all they will talk about is how their time has almost come to an end. The truth is that elderly people obsess about death as much as younger people do. Think about that next time you want to hold a conversation with an older adult.

Myth #6

Old people live in nursing homes and can’t get around by themselves.

The fact of the matter is that only about five percent of the older population live in nursing homes and the majority of them are quite mobile. This myth likely comes from television, movies or commercials you see where a family is putting their hapless, wheelchair-bound mother-in-law into a home so she can have a nurse watch over her all day and night.

These are just some things to consider when you see an older man or woman.