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Psychology Essay On Wellbeing Issues Faced By Aged People


You will write a 2000-word psychology essay (+/- 10%) using a theory of wellbeing to explore wellbeing issues faced in an applied setting (e.g., workplace, school), and then examine strategies that can be used to improve and build wellbeing in that setting. The essay should focus on integrating wellbeing theory and research from the published literature and how this could be usefully applied in a practical setting into strategies to increase/build/improve wellbeing.

You will:

  • Choose an applied setting (e.g., a workplace, school, residential aged care, hospital). Alternatively, you may choose a specific population group (e.g., new parents; people with a particular chronic illness; teenagers; etc). Ensuring you keep this specific will help give focus to your essay.
  • Research and then summarise the wellbeing considerations faced in the chosen setting (e.g., what are the wellbeing issues or challenges faced by people living in a residential aged-care setting? e.g., meaninglessness, loneliness etc)
  • Describe one theoretical approach to understanding wellbeing that can help explain the wellbeing issues identified in your chosen applied setting. Choose a theory that provides an appropriate framework for understanding the wellbeing considerations commonly experienced in the chosen setting (e.g., if meaninglessness is a concern in aged-care settings, is there a positive psychology theoretical perspective that discusses the importance of meaning to an individual’s wellbeing?)
  • Examine how researchers have previously attempted to influence (i.e., increase, improve, build, enhance) wellbeing in the chosen setting, including what was done and what was found, and strengths and weaknesses of these intervention/prevention attempts (note that peer-reviewed journal articles should be used).


The main concern of this psychology essay is related to aged people or old people who suffer from various physical and mental health problems. It is obvious that when people grow old suffer from various diseases which hampers the wellbeing of the aged people. More importantly, as the world is technologically growing lifestyle of people is also changing. Previously people used to live a big joint family where old people used to stay with their children and grandchildren (Cosco et al., 2017). Proper care used to be taken of the aged people for which psychological problems used to be found less but in the modern world people are more self-centric that is people focuses on staying in a nuclear family where the old parents are being avoided or being forced to stay in old age home which has led to the situation where aged people are more seen to suffer from mental problems as well as from different health problems (Carpentieri et al., 2017). The key focus of positive psychology is well-being, which aims at discovering certain factors that contribute to human well-being. For example, Martin Seligman indicates that these considerations are optimistic feelings, an activity, strong links to others, meaningfulness in one's life and a feeling of achievement in the fulfilment of one's goals. The study presented in the psychology essay focuses on the various challenges and issues that are being faced by aged people in residents or in old age homes. The study also focuses on the wellbeing theory that helps in understanding wellbeing and helps in explaining the issues in wellbeing. The study also focuses on the PERMA model that can be applied to the wellbeing of the aged people living in residential care.

Wellbeing issues faced by aged people in residential aged care
Aged people staying in residential aged care suffer from various issues which are as follows.

Throughout the entire life, a parent spends their life to grow up their children but when parents get old they are being forced to live in old age homes without understanding their feelings. In an old age home, aged people find new friends such as other old people who also live in the old age home but still they suffer from the negative psychological illness of meaninglessness (Ten Bruggencate et al., 2018). Staying along with their own family and grandchildren helps aged people to live with positive mental health but due to various circumstances when they are being forced to live in old age home separate from their own home they start having a feeling their lives are meaningless. They suffer from various psychological problems like depression along with various health problems. An aged people staying happily with their children and grandchildren live longer as compared to the aged people staying alone in residential aged care (Cornet & Holden, 2018). This is due to the fact they start feeling their life is meaningless and there is no point staying alive as they are unwanted by their own people even they have friends staying in the same old age home.

Many people feel isolation and depression in their older years either because they live alone or lack strong links in their families, which results in a lack of participation in group events. They often experience a decreased relationship to their culture of origin. An old person looks back on life, lives up to past achievements and ends his life (Vanleerberghe et al., 2017).Adjusting to old age changes allows a person to be resilient and learn new abilities to accommodate the changes inherent to this period of their lives. For a range of causes, aged people may become socially isolated due to poor financial conditions or have been thrown out of the home or grief due to the death of partners and friends or become sick. Various reports have been published by Age UK, which states that more than two million people live alone in England over the age of 75, and over a million elderly people claim that they go without talking to their family members, neighbours and friends over a month. Aged people suffer from loneliness due to the fact their children have died at a very early age before them due to disease or due to an accident (Narushima et al., 2018). This makes the aged people feel lonely due to the loss of their children. In many situations, aged people are left alone as their children are leaving abroad for job purpose and don’t return home for many years to look after their parents or have settled in that country permanently without having any concern for their old parents.

Depression in aged people includes fear of illness or death and concern over financial and health problems. Their reason for depression might also include the death of relatives, family members and pets, or the absence of a wife or partner (Douglaset al., 2017). Depression in the late start may be caused by medical conditions such as tumours, cardiac conditions, and arthritis. Furthermore, neurotransmission imbalances in the brain, such as serotonin and dopamine may contribute to depression in late life.

Old age home issues
Various old age homes cost higher which is very difficult for the old people to afford. Since the older people are mostly pensioners and are unable to pay such a high rent. Many aged people don't have any money to spare and cannot pay hospital expenses. This is one of the most important reasons for which aged people face troubles in old age homes. In an old age home, there is little flexibility in terms of the living room and food choice (Tansey et al., 2018). It's like living in a crowded place and anonymity is lacking. It's not the same way that they used to live in their house. The feeling is impersonal in an old-age home that personal dimension does not exist in old age homes. This might lead to an increase in their depression, as they are already away from children and grandchildren and cannot talk to their relatives. Many old age homes do not provide enough care to the old people or misbehave with the old peoples. Many reports have shown that old age homes do not provide needed medical services to the old people and also misbehaves with the old people.

PERMA’s Theory of Wellbeing
PERMA’s theory of wellbeing tries to answer the certain question of wellbeing with the help of five basic building blocks which consists of positive emotions, engagement, relationship, meaning and accomplishment. The well-being of an individual is based on these five components which are derived from different individuals to differing degrees (Seligman, 2018). One person's happy life isn't really dependent on another's a good life. The routes to a flourishing existence are numerous. Positive emotions are not prescriptive psychology. This means we should not tell people what to choose or what to prioritise, but studies on the conditions that can allow people to succeed can help people make more educated decisions to live a more complete and value-orientated life.

Positive Emotions
The basis of happiness theory applies to positive thoughts or emotions that can make anyone happy, warm and relaxed. Life is considered a fun life, which successfully will show these qualities. The aged care homes need to focus on their aged people and must try to lift up their spirit (Donaldson et al., 2020). The old people must be motivated to speak out their emotions and provide mental support such that they can share their peak moments of life to feel relieved. Old people if allowed to listen to their favourite music or letting them sing freely help them to lift up their emotions and come out from depression and they will not feel lonely.

Engagement is a situation in which a person truly likes to do or loves things to create that person will dedicate him and focus on doing it. This state of engagement is called flow in terms of positive psychology. This means that if the aged people are allowed or involved in the various curriculums which they like will bring positive changes within the aged people (Goodman et al., 2018). Various people have an interest in singing or in creating beautiful art with growing age the passion and interest are lost. So, if the aged people are engaged in this kind of activities then it will help them to come out of depression or will not feel meaninglessness.

Better wellbeing is dependent on relationships, for instance, great pleasure, sense, laughter, feeling of belonging and pride in performance, also amplifies the feelings that lead to well-being. Aged people living in old age must be encouraged to talk to other old people to create friendship and indulge in regular talking such that they can forget about the health problems they are suffering from or the negative thoughts about the life they are facing (Umucu et al., 2020). Aged people can be involved in the laughter clubs which is most needed for the aged people to remain physically and mentally healthy. This type of club, formation helps the old people to build a relationship with other old people.

The essence and intent of contributing to something greater than the self and representing it may be extracted. There are different cultural structures that can bring meaning to the life of aged people if they indulge themselves in education, minor work, etc. If aged people are involved in gardening or plant trees they will find it meaningful and will be equipped with work to free their mind from negative thoughts (Wagner et al., 2020). If they are allowed to grow flower plants that can be used for prayers they will be busy in worship and indulge themselves in the betterment of the environment.

In a variety of fields, from workplaces, athletics, gaming, leisure, etc. people seek accomplishment, excellence, performance and superiority themselves. And if they do not immediately contribute to positive emotions, meanings or partnerships, people search for achievement (Ryan et al., 2019). So, aged people must be allowed to speak out about the accomplishment that they have achieved in life which will help them to bring out their emotions and have the satisfaction of the accomplishment they have achieved.

Critical Evaluation
As per Daykin et al., (2017), there is growing recognition of the importance of arts and music in promoting subjective wellbeing. Subjective well-being is a complex idea of mental states which includes hedonic and positive aspects, as well as negative feelings like pleasure, fear and tension, and eudemonic dimensions such as significance, intent and value. It is essential to increase awareness of the impact of cultural approaches in these aspects of subjective wellbeing. Music is a complicated procedure that includes many forms, including singing, playing instruments and listening to music. There are also other genres, including rock and pop.A growing number of evidence has shown positive results of health from music, particularly singing. As per Poscia et al., (2018), Social anxiety and loneliness are separate but interrelated concepts that have many adverse affects on older people, including health, psychological and physiological results. A potential means for combating social loneliness and anxiety amongst older people can be managed with new technology and community-orientated arts. The findings are particularly good in communities with sensory impairment.

Well-being, which is related to prudential value or quality of life, refers to something inherent in someone's worth. An individual's well-being is that which is related to healthy living, which is in that person's self-interest. Well-being can be positive as well as negative. It is sometimes opposed to illness, in its positive sense. The word 'subjective well-being' indicates how people perceive and assess their lives, typically assessed by various questions in relation to their self-reported well-being. Often various welfare categories such as mental well-being, physical goodness, economic well-being or emotional health are differentiated. The core of the construction of an intelligent home for elderly people is to assist them to create a physical and mental connection to increase their quality of life and to achieve an independent, comfortable and happy elderly life. The major concern for the elderly is that their connections with the family, culture and the outside world are degraded and separated not only in their physical aspect but also in psychological terms, by the loss of physical and social roles. Dr Seligman's PERMA models for the elderly must not only be designed and developed for the improvement of physical conditions but must help them interact with the social world in a psychological way and enhance their overview.

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Cornet, V. P., & Holden, R. J. (2018). Systematic review of smartphone-based passive sensing for health and wellbeing. Journal of biomedical informatics, 77, 120-132.

Cosco, T. D., Howse, K., & Brayne, C. (2017). Healthy ageing, resilience and wellbeing. Epidemiology and Psychiatric Sciences, 26(6), 579-583.

Daykin, N., Mansfield, L., Meads, C., Julier, G., Tomlinson, A., Payne, A., ... & Victor, C. (2018). What works for wellbeing? A systematic review of wellbeing outcomes for music and singing in adults. Perspectives in public health, 138(1), 39-46.

Donaldson, S. I., Heshmati, S., Lee, J. Y., & Donaldson, S. I. (2020). Examining building blocks of well-being beyond PERMA and self-report bias. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 1-8.

Douglas, O., Lennon, M., & Scott, M. (2017). Green space benefits for health and well-being: A life-course approach for urban planning, design and management. Cities, 66, 53-62.

Goodman, F. R., Disabato, D. J., Kashdan, T. B., & Kauffman, S. B. (2018). Measuring well-being: A comparison of subjective well-being and PERMA. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 13(4), 321-332.

Narushima, M., Liu, J., & Diestelkamp, N. (2018). Lifelong learning in active ageing discourse: its conserving effect on wellbeing, health and vulnerability. Ageing & Society, 38(4), 651-675.

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Ryan, J., Curtis, R., Olds, T., Edney, S., Vandelanotte, C., Plotnikoff, R., & Maher, C. (2019). Psychometric properties of the PERMA Profiler for measuring wellbeing in Australian adults. PloS one, 14(12), e0225932.

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Tansey, T. N., Smedema, S., Umucu, E., Iwanaga, K., Wu, J. R., Cardoso, E. D. S., & Strauser, D. (2018). Assessing college life adjustment of students with disabilities: application of the PERMA framework. Rehabilitation Counseling Bulletin, 61(3), 131-142.

Ten Bruggencate, T. I. N. A., Luijkx, K. G., & Sturm, J. (2018). Social needs of older people: a systematic literature review. Ageing and Society, 38(9), 1745-1770.

Umucu, E., Wu, J. R., Sanchez, J., Brooks, J. M., Chiu, C. Y., Tu, W. M., & Chan, F. (2020). Psychometric validation of the PERMA-profiler as a well-being measure for student veterans. Journal of American college health, 68(3), 271-277.

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Wagner, L., Gander, F., Proyer, R. T., & Ruch, W. (2020). Character strengths and PERMA: Investigating the relationships of character strengths with a multidimensional framework of well-being. Applied Research in Quality of Life, 15(2), 307-328.


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