Baby Boomers - Quality of Life

October 1, 2018

“It is a mortal sin to discard the eldelry” - Pope Francis

As I read the above quote, I ponder very frequently where would I be and where would I reach, if I would not have my grandparents. I with full conscience solely credit my grandparents for the virtues, values and beliefs that they have imbibed in me. With due respect, love and care to all the elderly, I was inspired to take my PhD research on them. Hence would like to share few of my findings on the quality of life of the elderly.

Every year October 1 is celebrated as the international day for elderly. The 2018 theme of United Nations International Day for Older Persons (UNIDOP) is “Celebrating Older Human Rights Champion”. We see and hear human rights violations throughout the world, like increasing number of refugees, impact of climate change, and attack on journalists. The vulnerable populations such as children and elderly are not spared either. The UN 2011 states that around the world, older persons are at the risk of poverty, discrimination and violence and that they typically lack services and measures designed for them. This can in turn influence elder people’s mental status such as self-esteem and quality of life.

In 2017, it was estimated that there are about 962 million people aged 60 or over in the world, comprising 13 per cent of the global population. The population aged 60 or above is growing at a rate of about 3 per cent per year. In India, people above 60 years of age are considered to be elderly. The percentage of elderly people is expected to go up in India from 8% in 2015 to 19 % in 2050. The country now faces the major challenge of how to take care of such a large population of senior citizens – whose number is set to grow three-fold from around 100 million at present to 300 million by 2050.

Quality of life is the general well-being of individuals and societies, outlining negative and positive features of life. In elderly, quality of life can be explained in terms of objective quality of life and subjective quality of life. Objective quality of life is high in those cases where income is high, health is good, social networks are large and reliable. Subjective quality of life emphasizes an individual’s perceptions and evaluations. Subjective quality of life is defined as high life satisfaction, strong positive emotions like happiness and low negative emotions like sadness.

An elderly person's quality of life is defined, first and foremost, by the respect they have for themselves, something over which they have power, and secondly, by the respect the outside world shows them. Elderly who are active, well groomed, eat and sleep wisely, do not seek to isolate themselves at home or in nursing homes. Those who continue to cultivate their minds and pass on their life experiences enjoy a superior quality of life.

Researching on the quality of life in the elderly has become extremely important due to the longevity brought to human life. Living longer may result in a life marked with dependence and disabilities. The epidemiologic changes resulting from this demographic transition have led to a greater prevalence of chronic degenerative conditions, with sequel and complications, producing impairments, dependence, and the need for long-term care. The aging process is heterogeneous, frequently leading to two extreme situations, i.e., an excellent quality of life or a very bad quality of life; many intermediate possibilities can be found between these extremes.

Moreover, in this stage of life, various conditions, such as retirement, widowhood, loss of social roles, social support net-work reduction, loneliness, and lack of personal life significance, can create obstacles to a better quality of life (Paschoal et al, 2007).

Earlier studies have shown elders living in family set up have higher quality of life compared to their counterparts, the overall well-being was significantly affected for those who were singles (unmarried and widowed). Quality of life was higher in males than females. Married had better quality of life than divorced and widows/widowers. Further divorced had good quality of life compared to widows/widowers.

An critical evaluation of the studies done on widowhood and quality of life reveals that both male and female elderly with spouses alive preferred staying with their sons but widows and widowers preferred living with daughters.

My research on elderly focused two districts of Karnataka, Dakshina Kannada and Udupi consisting of 240 elderly. The sample comprised of elderly living in family set up, old age homes, elderly with spouses alive, widowers and widows. Results revealed Quality of life was higher among Institutionalized Elderly compared to Non institutionalized Elderly. Elderly male were more social then elderly females. Elderly women especially living with their partner in old age homes showed higher quality of life compared to elderly women living in the family set up. Same results were applicable for widows. Elderly Men with their Spouse Alive had better Social quality of life compared to Widowers. Elderly Widowers showed higher Social quality of life compared to Widows. Elderly Men with Spouse Alive had higher Social life skills compared to Elderly Women with Spouse Alive.

It’s not very surprising to get such results since many elderly couple prefers staying in old homes rather than being at home alone, concerning their health and physical care and also they can be soft targets for crime. In spite of all this awareness among family members and care takers needs to be created regarding the various problems associated with elderly and to deal effectively with them. Recommendations can be made both to Government and Non-government organizations regarding the necessity of appointing Counselors and Psychologists to enhance the overall wellbeing of the Elderly.

Few techniques which help improve quality of life of an elderly is by providing more social support, involving them in hobby clubs and leisure activities, providing physically safer environment and keeping them physically fit, even with very mild physical activities. Make them feel their importance in your life, let them be connected with family, friends and community, don’t regard them as a burden rather respect and understand them. Also it’s very necessary to keep their minds active by solving puzzles, reading, writing, memory games which improves overall well-being.

I would like to end the article by requesting youngsters to take more research studies and create awareness of rendering care and service to the deserved elderly.

By Dr Deepa Marina Rasquinha
Dr Deepa Marina Rasquinha is presently employed as an assistant professor, department of clinical psychology, SOAHS, Manipal Academy of Higher Education. She received her PhD in psychology from Mangalore University for working in the area of gerontology. She can be contacted at or
To submit your article / poem / short story to Daijiworld, please email it to mentioning 'Article/poem submission for daijiworld' in the subject line. Please note the following:

  • The article / poem / short story should be original and previously unpublished in other websites except in the personal blog of the author. We will cross-check the originality of the article, and if found to be copied from another source in whole or in parts without appropriate acknowledgment, the submission will be rejected.
  • The author of the poem / article / short story should include a brief self-introduction limited to 500 characters and his/her recent picture (optional). Pictures relevant to the article may also be sent (optional), provided they are not bound by copyright. Travelogues should be sent along with relevant pictures not sourced from the Internet. Travelogues without relevant pictures will be rejected.
  • In case of a short story / article, the write-up should be at least one-and-a-half pages in word document in Times New Roman font 12 (or, about 700-800 words). Contributors are requested to keep their write-ups limited to a maximum of four pages. Longer write-ups may be sent in parts to publish in installments. Each installment should be sent within a week of the previous installment. A single poem sent for publication should be at least 3/4th of a page in length. Multiple short poems may be submitted for single publication.
  • All submissions should be in Microsoft Word format or text file. Pictures should not be larger than 1000 pixels in width, and of good resolution. Pictures should be attached separately in the mail and may be numbered if the author wants them to be placed in order.
  • Submission of the article / poem / short story does not automatically entail that it would be published. Daijiworld editors will examine each submission and decide on its acceptance/rejection purely based on merit.
  • Daijiworld reserves the right to edit the submission if necessary for grammar and spelling, without compromising on the author's tone and message.
  • Daijiworld reserves the right to reject submissions without prior notice. Mails/calls on the status of the submission will not be entertained. Contributors are requested to be patient.
  • The article / poem / short story should not be targeted directly or indirectly at any individual/group/community. Daijiworld will not assume responsibility for factual errors in the submission.
  • Once accepted, the article / poem / short story will be published as and when we have space. Publication may take up to four weeks from the date of submission of the write-up, depending on the number of submissions we receive. No author will be published twice in succession or twice within a fortnight.
  • Time-bound articles (example, on Mother's Day) should be sent at least a week in advance. Please specify the occasion as well as the date on which you would like it published while sending the write-up.

Comment on this article

  • Allen Fernandes, Mumbai

    Wed, Oct 03 2018

    Exquisite article Dr Deepa, this really is informative and relevant to the present generation. Keep up the good work.

  • Ashwini K A, Bengaluru

    Wed, Oct 03 2018

    Meaningful article ma'am. A much needed information for the current generation individuals.

  • Don, Bangalore

    Wed, Oct 03 2018

    Very informative. Wonderful work Dr. Deepa. Wish you all the very best on your future projects.

  • Dr. Jacksan Fernandes, Margao

    Wed, Oct 03 2018

    A very enriching article. Giving our grandparents much needed social, emotional and physical support is need of the hour. Excellent work in the field of gerontology by Dr Deepa.

  • Rinsa, Dubai

    Tue, Oct 02 2018

    A touching and thought provoking message brilliantly penned down by one of my favourite and proud mentor ❣️

  • Varun Frank, Arva

    Tue, Oct 02 2018

    Respecting elders is respecting life. A very good thought provoking article.....

  • Dr. Hithakshi Anand, Mangalore

    Tue, Oct 02 2018

    Dear Deepa,
    Your efforts need to be appreciated as the research article is presented very meaningfully. The worth of grandparents should be known to every child. Respecting and taking care of the elderly is the need of the hour. As we can see many of them are abandoned by their children and left in oldage homes. Hope this research article become an eye- opener.

  • Sr. Vinora A.C, Mangaluru

    Tue, Oct 02 2018

    Very apt and inspiring article with research evidence. Elderly people are blessings at home and we can learn alot from their life experience. Congrats Dr. Deepa for the thought provoking article.

  • Precilla Dsilva, Mangalore

    Tue, Oct 02 2018

    Very relevant and well articulated write up. In fact the need of the hour. Especially appreciate the awareness on the quality of elderly life and the techniques to improve that quality. Keep up the good work.

  • Deepa kothari, moodbidiri

    Tue, Oct 02 2018

    Very well articulated mam.. .and an article of relevance to d present generation..offlate in india too old ages homes r increasing in number...

  • Collete, NEW DELHI

    Tue, Oct 02 2018

    A beautiful writing with a thought provoking message..keep up the good work and keep sharing your knowledge with the world.all the best

  • Cleona Quadras, Mumbai

    Mon, Oct 01 2018

    A thought provoking article for all. Keep up the good work.

  • Fr Robert dsouza, Mangalore

    Mon, Oct 01 2018

    Congratulations for the beautiful, timely and an enriching article. It's the need of the hour. May this article inspire many to respect and take care of elderly people. They are real treasure of today's society. Well done.

  • Mangalurian, Mangaluru

    Mon, Oct 01 2018

    A very complex situation indeed.

    Until a few decades ago, each family had six to ten children. At least one of them would hang around the parents to provide the needed care.

    Now every couple has just one or two children, who may need to be in some other city or country to work! We all know many couples in such situation, and it is not pretty.

    Thank you for the socially relevant article.

  • nayana, mangalore

    Mon, Oct 01 2018

    realy relevant article for the present .the care and concern showed towards elderly are realy appreciable .

  • fr antony, mangalore

    Mon, Oct 01 2018

    My Appreciation for the work published. Its an area of study that needs to become familiar. You have wonderfully contained insight, and research in the article. God Bless.

  • Peter Franko, Mangalore

    Mon, Oct 01 2018

    Very good article and apt day to be published
    Respect and take care of elderly

  • Jason Noronha, Dubai

    Mon, Oct 01 2018

    Very nice and meaningful.

  • Colin Moras, Bangalore

    Mon, Oct 01 2018

    Very nicely written, informative and very well thought out article.

  • Rajani Shetty, Mangalore

    Mon, Oct 01 2018

    Value added article.

  • Rahul Roshan Sequeira, Doha Qatar

    Mon, Oct 01 2018

    Very informative and valuable article on the occasion of International Day Older Persons (October 1).

  • Aaron Fernandes, Mangalore

    Mon, Oct 01 2018

    A very meaningful and well articulated article. Worth reading and being shared.
    Keep up the good work and all the best .

  • Damu, Mangalore

    Mon, Oct 01 2018

    The japanese have invented a solution for this called ubasute, or oyasute.

  • Nelson Frank, Arva

    Mon, Oct 01 2018

    Thanks for writing such a good article, I stumbled onto your blog .. I am hoping the same best work from you in the future as well. Its indeed a creative writing.

Leave a Comment

Title: Baby Boomers - Quality of Life

You have 2000 characters left.


Please write your correct name and email address. Kindly do not post any personal, abusive, defamatory, infringing, obscene, indecent, discriminatory or unlawful or similar comments. will not be responsible for any defamatory message posted under this article.

Please note that sending false messages to insult, defame, intimidate, mislead or deceive people or to intentionally cause public disorder is punishable under law. It is obligatory on Daijiworld to provide the IP address and other details of senders of such comments, to the authority concerned upon request.

Hence, sending offensive comments using daijiworld will be purely at your own risk, and in no way will be held responsible.