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Assessment of the Impact of Activity on Health Status in the Elderly pp. 279-294 $100.00
Authors:  (A. Gebska Kuczerowska, M. Miller, M.J. Wysocki, Department of Health Promotion in National Institute of Hygiene, Poland)
Introduction: According to the opinion of gerontologists, it is possible to prevent or
delay the negative influence of aging on mental and physical health status by healthy
behaviors. “Active aging” people bring a lot for their societies and that’s why activity is
the value not only for the elderly but also for the societies.
Aim: The purpose of the research was to assess the impact of various forms of the
activity (physical, pro-social and intellectual) on the health condition people who are 65
years old and older.
Material and Methods: The research was conducted by anonymous questionnaire
forms. A nation-wide research had been preceded by a pilot study. After a preliminary
qualification and selection of 2,072 questionnaires, a further analysis of 1,910
questionnaires (92.6%) have been finally classified. The condition of health has been
evaluated on the basis of information: illness and health problems, self-evaluation of
health condition, body weight, use of medical assistance, and other aids, hospitalization
and reasons for it and presence of at least one group of disabled persons whose mobility
is limited and reasons for these limitations. The extent of psycho-social health has been
evaluated on the basis of moods such as sadness, depression, limited life enthusiasm,
assessment of satisfaction resulting from contacts with relatives and other persons, and
identification of problems connected with aging.
Results: Active persons determine their health condition more positively, they suffer
from fewer CVDs and their health is more stable, they have a better psychological
condition (loneliness, depression), and they are less often use medical services in
Disability recognized in legal terms and formal disability, except 1st disability
category (the hardest cases) and persons who are immobile does not constitute any
barrier in becoming active. Similarly, diseases don't exclude activity, except pathologies that limit or prevent elderly people from partaking in any activities. Activity has a
positive impact on keeping a proper body weight. Active persons stay independent, are
satisfied with life more often, feel that they are needed, and their self-esteem is high. It
seems that a barrier in the psychological sense in becoming active by elderly people is
the fact that they are less willing to become active. The majority of respondents have
admitted that their health condition has deteriorated drastically at the age of 63 to 64.
Conclusion: Analysis of results has confirmed the existence of a relation between
activity and health condition. Activity (different kinds) is deciding about healthy aging
and it is simultaneously a positive indicator. 

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Assessment of the Impact of Activity on Health Status in the Elderly pp. 279-294