Getting old is considered a privilege and we celebrate those octagenarians who are still playing the violin, running marathons or volunteering with the even more elderly. They should be celebrated but there is a dark side to being aged. Those who can no longer care for themselves end up in facilities that are all over the place with the services and environments they provide. Some are very good and some awful. A recent study has shown that some of the old people who sit listlessly staring into space are over-medicated. Treatment for physical problems makes sense and few of us of a certain age don't need help with blood pressure or something else. These people are given anti-psychotic meds, perhaps to help control them. In the study, when people were taken off of the pills, the were more alert, one old gentleman getting up and dancing to music when he hadn't shown interest in anything for months. Well, there's a surprise. As people age, they are more and more fragile. Metabolic systems age and drugs affect them differently. Pharmaceutical research is typically done with subjects who are male and young, certainly not aged. It's no wonder that old people aren't active and engaged if they are taking anti-psychotics when the correct dosage isn't even known. More people should be enjoying old age and coukd if the condition was better understood.
I've been writing on and off for years and this is where my more serious pieces will be.