John Libbey Eurotext

Gériatrie et Psychologie Neuropsychiatrie du Vieillissement


Successful aging: analysis of the components of a gerontological paradigm Volume 16, issue 1, Mars 2018


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1 UMR 6590, ESO-Angers, Université d’Angers, Angers, France
2 UMR 6590, ESO-Nantes, Université de Nantes, Nantes, France
* Tirés à part

Since the mid-20th century, scientist has been searching the components of successful or active aging. At the beginning of the 21st century, demographic aging is now a global issue and successful aging has emerged as a gerontological paradigm through nation and international policies. Conducting a comprehensive review of scientific literature on this paradigm offers the opportunity to identify the key components of successful aging. Based on the results of this approach, we show that the components are not limited to the functional and cognitive health of individuals. Multidimensionality of successful aging highlights the complexity of factors influencing the experiences of aging, and the variety of dimensions involved: functional, psychological, social, spiritual or environmental. Representations and aspirations of what would be successful aging differ from one society to another, from culture to another. The article proposes a framework for an exploratory analysis of the vulnerabilities of elderly not to assess the success of aging, but to capture the components of the well-being of people in old age.