Theory of Successful Aging

Topics: Nursing, Scientific method, Old age Pages: 6 (1659 words) Published: March 17, 2011
Theory Of Successful Aging


Adequacy: The Flood’s Theory of Successful Aging (Flood, 2005) was developed to addresses a nursing theory for care of the older adult regarding to the lack of nursing theory that offers clearly delineated guidelines for care of aging. Flood’s(2002) unique definition of successful aging among other explanations includes mental, physical, and spiritual elements of the aging person and emphasizing the individual's self appraisal. She used existing knowledge derived deductively from the Roy adaptation model, one of the most widely accepted nursing theory model, and integrated these ideas with Tornstam's sociological theory of gerotranscendence and literature related to the concept of successful aging to comprise the foundation of the theory (Flood, 2005). The author adequately explains the specific nursing actions that constitute these attributes.

Clarity: The attributes of the theory and the model (Flood, 2005) clearly defines the major concepts relevant to successful aging. Flood provides examples of person with cancer that would exemplify the attribute although the physical health is not stated in the assumptions. In addition, there are no ambiguous statements, nor abstract or complex language employed. Nurses can readily understand the language used in the theory. Moreover, guidelines for interventions to help not only for nurses but caregivers to care for elders are provided for a completely understanding.

Consistency: Flood’s views of aging and definitions of successful aging addresses the definitions’ consistency throughout her explanation. It have congruent use of terms, interpretations, principle and methods. The distinctly divergent terminology used among the description of the theory’s components and recommended interventions are not presented.

Logical Development: This theory perfectly follow a line of thought of previous works. Earlier study noted “A patient-centered definition will also be essential for future research in the field of successful aging, for it will allow determination of predictors truly relevant to persons who are aging.” (Phelan & Larson, 2002, p.1308). In addition, Flood (2005) points out that “none of these theories provides a thorough explanation or description of the mental, physical, and spiritual aspects of aging. Furthermore, most of these theories conceptualize successful aging objectively and do not take into account the older adult's perception of his or her aging.” (p. 35). Flood (2002) has presented antecedents and consequences of successful aging in her earlier study on concept analysis of successful aging. In this theory, the author integrated Roy's descriptions of environment, health, and nursing which allow for a logical context within Flood's (2002, 2005) assumptions are relevant. Environmental exchanges occur as part of the concepts in Flood's (2005) theory. Moreover, the scientific process of deductive reformulation lends credibility and sound logic to Flood’s theory of successful aging. These evidences show the logically development of the theory.

Level of Theory Development: The author attempts to present a theory of successful aging as a nursing theory. The constructs within the coping processes that composed in this theory are measurable or observable output responses. Flood's (2005) theory describes exchanges of activity and characteristics that occur simultaneously and lead to successful aging. Flood offers this useful theory to guide nursing care for older adult. Although it is a combination of theories from other disciplines, the theory of gerotranscendence, it is broader in scope than the theories from which it was derived. Therefore, this theory does not address all of nursing, only aging advocacy. It is narrow in scope than grand theory, composed of fewer nursing concepts and propositions that measurable and testable, and provides applicable to practice which considered as a middle range theory....

References: Bredow, T. S. (2009). Analysis, evaluation, and selection of a middle range nursing theory, In S. J. Peterson & T. S. Bredow (2009). Middle range theories: Application to nursing research (2nd ed., pp. 46-59). Philadelphia: Lippincott, Williams, & Wilkins.
Dillaway, H., & Byrnes, M. (2009). Reconsidering successful aging: a call for renewed and expanded academic critiques and conceptualizations. Journal of Applied Gerontology, 28(6), 702-722. doi:10.1177/0733464809333882.
Fisher, B. J. (1992). Successful aging and life satisfaction: A pilot study for conceptual clarification. Journal of Aging Studies. 6(2), 191-202.
Flood, M. (2002). Successful aging: a concept analysis. Journal of Theory Construction & Testing, 6(2), 105-108. Retrieved from CINAHL database
Flood, M. (2005). A mid-range nursing theory of successful aging. Journal of Theory Construction & Testing, 9(2), 35-39.
Havighurst, R. J. (1961). Successful aging. The Gerontologist. 1(1), 8-13.
Phelan, E., & Larson, E. (2002). "Successful aging" -- where next?. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 50(7), 1306-1308. Retrieved from CINAHL database
Ryff, C. D. (1989). Successful aging: A developmental approach. The Gerontologist. 22(2), 209-214. Retrieved from CINAHL database
Tate, R., Loewen, B., Bayomi, D., & Payne, B. (2009). The consistency of definitions of successful aging provided by older men: the Manitoba Follow-up Study. Canadian Journal on Aging, 28(4), 315-322. doi:10.1017/S0714980809990225.
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