• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

In Health, Illness, and Optimal Aging: Biological and Psychosocial Perspectives, Carolyn M. Aldwin and Diane F. Gilmer undertake the challenging task of assembling an objective and holistic picture of human aging. The authors provide comprehensive, multidisciplinary coverage of the physical aspects of aging, including age-related changes and disease-related processes, the demography of the aging population, theories of aging, and the promotion of optimal aging. In addition, the book covers the psychosocial aspects of aging, including mental health, stress and coping, spirituality, and care giving in later years.   Health, Illness and Optimal Aging is recommended for researchers seeking an overview of health psychology and aging, as well as undergraduate and graduate students taking classes in the social, behavioral, and health sciences. This text is also valuable for practitioners working with the elderly in fields such as nursing, social work, occupational and physical therapy, day-care and nursing home administration, psychology, and rehabilitation.

The Interface between Physical and Mental Health
The interface between physical and mental health
Carolyn M.Aldwin, Michael R.Levenson, Diane F.Gilmer

This chapter reviews the literature on the interface between physical and mental health. We examine whether personality and affective characteristics such as hostility, anxiety, and depression constitute risk factors for morbidity and mortality, and whether the risk changes with age. We also discuss other personality processes such as control, self-efficacy optimism, and emotional stability, and whether these can protect health, thus slowing the aging process. However, health behavior habits also have major effects on health. Although smoking and dietary factors are addressed in previous chapters, the effects of alcohol on health have not been as extensively considered, and thus issues of aging and alcohol consumption will be ...

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