The Elderly’s Guide to Getting Old

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In my initial brainstorming of ideas for a subject to focus on for the Healthcare document I like the idea of making something for the Elderly, as they have the potential to be an isolated group at high risk of various health problems, and possibly in need of a simplified explanation of medial jargon surrounding their conditions.

During a client meeting with a GP, the idea that she found most interesting way of finding a way in info graphic form of communicating the natural changes that the body goes through during aging, similar to those found for teenagers about puberty. The hope is that this would be a reassuring way to educating people about their bodies – what’s to be expected with aging, and what may be a sign of a problem that needs to be checked out, with emphasis on natural aging as a stage of life to be celebrated, rather than a series of problems to be solved.

To help the medical information and facts about aging be easier to understand and more visually interesting, I liked the centering the picture on a portrait, or perhaps a caricature of an elderly couple, creating simple icons for the brain or skin on the body, and then expanding it with more information on the side. I found many puberty diagrams with a similar style

For the Elderly, there are a couple of topics that I would like to cover that are directly related to health;

  • tremours/shaking
  • memory loss
  • why does skin wrinkle?
  • fatigue
  • insomnia
  • loss of senses – colour vision, hearing, taste
  • loss of body muscle – increase in fat

I could include tips to help with these problems, as well as explanations for them.

However, I also want to keep my info-graphic as positive as possible, making a celebration of aging as a sign of  a long life well lived, experience and wisdom. It is important to me to try talk down or patronize in my information, while keeping it informal. Being 23 I have no idea what it is like to grow old, and I can’t pretend to, so this will be a learning g experience for me too. I felt the best way to do this way to use humour to celebrate being old, and a young persons view of older people – why we love them, and to include this into the diagram as a ‘symptom of being old’ in a light-hearted way

  • Jars of boiled sweets – related to loss of taste
  • high trouser line – body muscle deterioration
  • trinkets – hoarding problems
  • small dogs – how animals comfort lonely people
  • Granny Gangs
  • slow driving – failing senses, slower reaction times
  • Puzzles

I found a very good site that deals with age in a similar way,

www.agelessfx.com

 They have some very funny joke written by senior members of the public and celebrities about the trifles of getting old

You know you’re getting older when you’ve run out of things to learn the hard way

At my age….when I see a pretty young woman, I wonder what her mom looks like

You know you’re getting older when you look in the mirror and say, “Dad?”

The worse thing about growing old is having to listen to the advise of one’s children
To me – old age is always ten years older than I am.
Bernard Baruch
Interestingly, most of the info-graphics already around that have this kind of loving humour is aimed at hipsters, a group that has similar visual and behavioral quirks.
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