2014 Annual Scientific Meeting

The importance of optimism in maintaining healthy aging in rural Alaska 

12-06-2014 12:51 PM

Many Alaska Native Elders attended government-run boarding schools as children, were forbidden to speak their native language, and were forced to abandon their traditional subsistence lifestyle, yet they maintained an optimistic outlook and continued to age well. The Explanatory Model Interview Protocol was adapted to interview a purposive sample of Alaska Native Elders (n = 26) and grounded theory was used to develop a model of successful aging for Alaska Native Elders in Bristol Bay, Alaska. The theme of optimism was significant in the findings and was also found in each of the elements of successful aging, which were spirituality, emotional well-being, community engagement, and physical health. The Elders believed they were able to age successfully because they continued to be optimistic despite the challenges they faced (and are currently facing) in their communities.

#BehavioralandSocialSciences #Powerpoint #Gerontology #InterestGroups

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This powerpoint presentation highlights the role of optimism in Alaska Native Elders ability to age well despite challenges throughout their lives.

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