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Lifespan Development Final Project Stefanie R. Young Concordia University Nebraska October 24, 2014.

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Presentation on theme: "Lifespan Development Final Project Stefanie R. Young Concordia University Nebraska October 24, 2014."— Presentation transcript:

1 Lifespan Development Final Project Stefanie R. Young Concordia University Nebraska October 24, 2014

2 Age Birth to 24 months: Biological Processes My biological processes during this time period could be considered both normal and healthy. I was passed on no negative genetic traits in my birth from either parent. I was born with no birth defects and/or abnormalities. As an infant, I received proper nutrition and sleep, which both my brain and body required in order to grow properly. I also developed motor skills in a normally developmental manner in comparison to the statistical data in relation to infants in this age group. One very important aspect of infant to toddler health that my mother ensured for me involved getting all of my required immunizations. Between birth and 24 months of age an infant is required to obtain 16 different shots alone. This is a very important prevention method which is highly recommended, which can be evidenced by the following statement: “although the dangers of many diseases for children have greatly diminished, it is still important for parents to keep their children on a timely immunization schedule” (Santrock, 2010, p. 138).

3 Age Birth to 24 months: Cognitive Processes I believe that I adequately progressed through the Sensorimotor stage of Piaget’s Cognitive Development theory. The sensorimotor stage can be briefly described as, “the infant constructs an understanding of the world by coordinating sensory experiences with physical actions” (Santrock, 2010, p. 23). I utilized my five senses (including touch, taste, sight, smell, and hearing) in order to discover, understand, and learn the world around me. During this specific time period an infant’s brain grows tremendously. For the birth of my own daughter I was required by the military to take a course given by the hospital on the prevention of shaken baby syndrome. Specifically, shaken baby syndrome can be defined as, “brain swelling and hemorrhaging” (Santrock, 2010, p. 112). This condition usually occurs when a parent-figure gets frustrated and/or angry with the child, and shakes the baby. In addition, I also utilized a cotton helmet for my daughter when she first began to crawl, in order to protect her head during falls.

4 Age Birth to 24 Months: Socioemotional Processes During this stage of life, I was in the first stage of Erikson’s Psychosocial theory, which is termed “trust versus mistrust”, and can be specifically defined as, “trust in infancy sets the stage for a lifelong expectation that the world will be a good and pleasant place to live” (Santrock, 2010, p. 22). I have heard many tales from various family members, that I would often be forgotten about whilst inside my crib, as I cried and cried. I wonder if perhaps this experience is what caused me to be distrusting of both people and the environment around me – until proven otherwise.

5 Age 2 – 5 Years: Biological Processes My biological processes continued to be adequately met, in terms of proper sleep, nutrition, physician check-ups, and required immunizations. I also engaged in physical activity on a regular basis by playing with my older sister, in both our backyard and our front yard – as during the mid- 80s, my neighborhood was still considered a safe location; for example, houses and cars were left unlocked without fear of being stolen, and kids could play unsupervised on the block without their parents fearing that they might be stolen by a stranger. During this age span my mother needed to focus on maintaining a hazard- free home. For example, all cleaning liquids were placed on high shelves; each cabinet door had a child-proof lock on it; each door knob had a child- proof lock on it; the toilet bowl lids were always kept closed; I was kept away from all electrical sockets; etc. It was my mother’s duty to ensure that the house and my surroundings were safe; as during this age is when a child is their most curious and yet do not know better themselves.

6 Age 2 – 5 Years: Cognitive Processes During this stage of my life, I was in the second stage of Piaget’s Cognitive Developmental theory, termed the pre- operational stage. This stage can be defined as, “the child begins to represent the world with words and images. These words and images reflect increased symbolic thinking and go beyond the connection of sensory information and physical action” (Santrock, 2010, p. 23). During this time period, I often colored, traced, and drew artwork. I was actually quite talented and took great pride in my creations. I was also initially entered into the school-system during this age span. I excelled in all art areas, but was quite overwhelmed by the take home assignments requested by my other classes.

7 Age 2 – 5 Years: Socioemotional Processes The psychosocial stage which can best be applied to this age span for me is Erikson’s “industry versus inferiority” stage. This stage can be defined as, “children now need to direct their energy toward mastering knowledge and intellectual skills. The negative outcome is that the child may develop a sense of inferiority – feeling incompetent and unproductive” (Santrock, 2010, p. 22). I believe that my feelings of inferiority, due to the overwhelming amount of take home school work I was assigned at such a young age, highly contributed to my antisocial nature with other children my age. I was very shy and did not make friends easily.

8 Age 6 – 11 Years: Biological Processes During this age span, my sleep patterns and nutrition were still being adequately met. During the earlier years of this stage, I was still engaged in regular physical activity. However, towards the later years of this stage, I began my obsession of completing work-out tapes on a daily basis, due to my father calling me “fat” in great detail. I now believe that this was too much physical activity for an eleven year child to be partaking in; according to a national research study, children between the ages of 6 and 11 should only experience 60 minutes worth of moderate to excessive exercise per day (Santrock, 2010). Despite this fact, I was still fortunate to not have experienced certain negative behaviors during this stage, such as Obesity, Anorexia, and or Bulimia Nervosa as a result.

9 Age 6 – 11 Years: Cognitive Processes During this age span, I consider myself to have been in the concrete operational stage of Piaget’s Cognitive Developmental theory. Specifically, in this stage “the child can now reason more logically about concrete events and classify objects into different areas” (Santrock, 2010, p. 23). Due to the overwhelming nature of homework that Catholic school had upon me mentally and emotionally, my mother pulled me out and entered me into public school. I began to do significantly better with both in-school studies and at-home class work. I also discovered a love of reading, and by eleven years of age, was reading books well outside of my age-group.

10 Age Years: Socioemotional Processes Due to my entering a new school, as well as a different type of school setting (going from Catholic school to Public school), I had to re-find my place among my newly introduced peer group. This can be a daunting task for a child, and I feel that whilst undergoing this transition, I was facing a different aspect of Erikson’s “industry versus inferiority” stage of his Psychosocial theory, which states: “during the adolescent years individuals face finding out who they are and what they are about” (Santrock, 2010, p. 22). Although I was still at a young age for this specific stage, I certainly feel that I personally encountered such questions and circumstances during this time of major transition.

11 Age 12 – 15 Years: Biological Processes During this age span, I entered puberty, as well as began my menarche, as is normal. However, I experienced dysmenorrhea, which basically means that my cramping was significantly more pronounced and painful than what is considered normal. Oftentimes, for the first two days of my cycle, I could not leave the fetal position whilst laying on my bed, due to the immense pain. In addition, the volume of menstruation fluids was also significantly more than what is deemed normal, and as a result quite difficult to adequately manage. My sleep patterns during this time period were a bit off. I would receive less sleep during the school week and an over-excess of sleep on the weekends; as per the text, this is termed “sleep debt” (Santrock, 2010, p. 125). My nutritional status was still appropriate. My level of physical activity was still borderline excessive.

12 Age 12 – 15 Years: Cognitive Processes I feel that during this time period I was in the formal operational stage of Piaget’s Cognitive Developmental theory. This stage can be described as, “the adolescent reasons in more abstract, idealistic, and logical ways” (Santrock, 2010, p. 23). During this age span, I was becoming increasingly more interested in reading large books, which in most cases were thicker than textbooks. This reading, as well as the time spent alone while partaking in this activity, caused me to become a deep, analytical, and reflective thinker.

13 Age 12 – 15 Years: Socioemotional Processes During this age span, I had made one close friend from my new school. However, my mother did not know her family well enough to allow me to go over to her house and play. My mother also did not like her coming over to my house in order to play because she felt that the girl’s clothing and personal belongings smelled like cat-spray (later on I did find out that my mother was correct – her cat would continuously spray all over her house with no disciplinary corrections). Due to these restrictions I was really only able to meet my social needs by speaking to this friend over the telephone. In addition, I began to learn how to play the guitar, in order to keep me occupied in my down time. I believe that this experience and results ensued, can be summed up nicely by the “intimacy versus isolation” stage of Erikson’s Psychosocial theory, which states: “at this time, individual’s face the developmental task of forming intimate relationships. If young adults form healthy friendships and an intimate relationship with another, intimacy will be achieved; if not, isolation will result” (Santrock, 2010, p. 23).

14 Age 16 – 19 Years: Biological Processes During this age span, I went from being a gangly-teenager to a full-bodied young woman. Regrettably, it was during this time period as well that I started to engage in sexual activity. My sleep patterns had decreased considerably. I also began to develop body dysmorphia, as a result my nutritional levels were poor, and my level of physical activity excessive. As per the text, such negative behaviors can highly influence an individual’s longevity in their later adult years. For example, “the negative effects of abusing one’s body might not show up in emerging adulthood or the first part of early adulthood, but they will probably surface later in early adulthood or in middle adulthood” (Santrock, 2010, p. 140).

15 Age 16 – 19 Years: Cognitive Processes My cognitive over-achievement level was put to a stop during this age span, due to negative peer influence. I often skipped school in order to hang out with my friends, and as a result was forced to attend many years of summer school classes – but still my mind was not mentally involved in the information being presented. Sadly, I also stopped reading in order to make more time for social activities. The text describes my past situation as an event due to conflicts between the brain’s prefrontal cortex and amygdala. The prefrontal cortex of the brain is the area which regulates “reasoning, decision making, and self-control” (Santrock, 2010, p. 116); whereas, the amygdala regulates emotion. During this age span the amygdala is overstimulated by hormones. In addition, the prefrontal cortex has not reached full maturity in order to effectively counteract the amygdala.

16 Age 16 – 19 Years: Socioemotional Processes This stage of my life reminds me of Bronfenbrenner’s Ecological theory; specifically the environmental influence of the microsystem. I was now actively involved with hanging out with friends, both during and after school and on the weekends. I allowed myself to indulge in negative temptations due to the negative influence of my chosen friends. As a result, my home environment became increasingly uncomfortable, as I resisted my mother’s worries and rules in trying to protect me, and rebelled.

17 Age 20 – 29 Years: Biological Processes During this age span, I joined the United States Navy, which initially got be into the best shape of my life; including the proper and healthy amount of sleep, nutrition, and physical exercise. However, once put into my first actual duty station, the demands of the profession took a negative toll on these items, due to the fact of always being at work. Later in this time period, I suffered a devastating physical injury, which left me deaf in my left ear as well as irreversibly damaging two of my cranial nerves. This injury left me with a chronic pain disorder at a younger than normal age; specifically, chronic pain can be defined as, “chronic disorders are characterized by a slow onset and long duration; are rare in early adulthood, increase in middle adulthood, and become common in late adulthood” (Santrock, 2010, p. 140).

18 Age 20 – 29 Years: Cognitive Processes My cognitive processes truly flourished during this time range: I studied and achieved to become an Air Traffic Controller; I obtained an Associate’s degree in Psychology; and I obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Human Services. I also became a news fanatic, which helped to reestablish healthy reading habits, aside from required textbooks. Towards the end of this age period, I experienced extreme anxiety and depression as a direct result of my service- related injuries and the unknown future associated with them. My above life experience can be easily compared with K. Warner Schaie’s Seattle Longitudinal Study. This study tested the intelligence of over five hundred individual’s, aged 25 through 88; in such areas as verbal ability, verbal memory, numeric ability, spatial orientation, inductive reasoning, and perceptual speed. The results of this study show that intelligence in these areas peak in the age area of 25 – 32, maintain steady until approximately age 50 – 60, and then slowly start to decrease.

19 Age 20 – 29 Years: Socioemotional Processes My socioemotional processes during this time span could be considered poor. During my early twenties, I lost all of my childhood friends due to a silly falling out. I then had no social life, and fell into abusive relationship after abusive relationship. I left home to join the military during the mid stage of this period, and this act gave my mother the strength to finally divorce my adulterous father. My father did not take this well, and no child has seen and/or heard from him in years. It was this factor, not the actual divorce, which deeply hurt my family. I also rescued two dogs during this time period, who can be considered my first real babies, and experienced the nurturing and protective nature of a mother. In addition, towards the end of this age span I became reclusive and self- isolating due to my service-related injuries and the reactions displayed to me by my co- workers – it was a dark time. The above described scenario reminds me of Kohlberg’s Stages of Moral thinking. At this point in my life I would be in the third category of this theory which is postconventional reasoning. This is the highest level of his theory and can be described as, “the individual recognizes that alternative moral courses, explores the options, and then decides on a personal moral code” (Santrock, 2010, p. 471). Due to my father cheating on my mother, I developed the moral code of no cheating within any of my personal relationships. Because of this past experience, loyalty is one of the most important qualities a friend or spouse can possess in my view.

20 Age 30 – 39 Years: Biological Processes During this age span, I continued to deal with the devastating results and loss associated with the injury I incurred whilst serving in the military. I had to learn ways in which to cope with the chronic pain that ensued; including various medications, acupuncture and relaxation techniques. As a result of these many medications, which induced extreme drowsiness, sleep was crucial, and oversleeping became a normal circumstance. I also had my first child during this time period; experiencing the process of pregnancy, and giving birth via a cesarean section. My level of physical activity has declined from what it used to be in terms of exercise. My nutrition can be considered average. I am also now a vegetarian which has significantly decreased my required protein intake. In addition, I can start to feel the bodily aches and pains associated with normal aging. As a result of my injuries and post-pregnancy weight, I can admit that both my self-esteem and self-concept are not what they should be for this age category.

21 Age Years: Cognitive Processes Currently, during this age period, I am studying to obtain a Master’s degree in Human Services. Once this has been achieved, I would then like to either obtain a Master’s degree in Social Work and/or an Associate’s degree in animal studies in so that I may work at an animal sanctuary. I am also learning how to be a mother to a human child, which is more extensive than I previously thought it to be. Although the above mentioned all pertains to an increase in academic knowledge, it is also related to my self-esteem and self- concept. The more information that I learn, the better that I feel about myself. In addition, once I am actually employed in the field of human services, I believe that my self-concept will increase, as I will be assisting numerous individuals who require assistance within their lives.

22 Age 30 – 39 Years: Socioemotional Processes During this age span, I was medically retired from the Navy due to my injuries which are deemed irreversible. Although at this point and time I have come to terms with my physical loss and chronic pain, I now how to re-learn how to be a civilian socially. This transition in itself can be considered a loss, because I am no longer a part of something bigger than myself. I have very little friendships, but fortunately have reconnected with my mother on a deeper level. My daughter also has a swallowing-developmental delay, and so my main adult-interaction involves her therapists and doctors. Despite these hardships I still am firm in my moral belief system. I believe that I have a strong moral personality, moral identity and moral character. However, I do not consider myself to be a moral exemplar because I feel that I am human and do make mistakes from time to time, as is normal.

23 Age 40 – 49 Years: Biological Processes As I enter into my forties, I must become more health conscious, in order to promote a more positive health status in my elder years. This involves maintaining a healthy sleep cycle, getting the proper amount of healthy nutrition, exercising regularly, and going to yearly physical wellness visits. In addition, it would be highly beneficial to my health if I can stop smoking, either before or during this age period. This is also a great time period to begin doing yearly mammograms, in order to detect possible breast cancer in its earliest stages. Research has shown that women who have chosen to breast feed their children are less likely to develop breast cancer, than women who have formula fed their babies. Unfortunately, I was not able to produce milk in a timely fashion in order to breast feed, and so I am more at risk. This proves to me the importance of health prevention for my specific scenario.

24 Age 40 – 49 Years: Cognitive Processes During this time period, I believe that I am going to be mentally confronted by the results of my physical appearance as a result of aging – in terms of dealing with this change in a healthy manner. I also want to ensure that I engage in regular mental exercise; for example, by way of reading. Such mental activity may help to prevent the onset of Alzheimer's and/or dementia in my elder years. Specifically, dementia can be defined as, “a global term for any neurological disorder in which the primary symptom is deterioration of mental functioning” (Santrock, 2010, p. 142). In addition, Alzheimer’s disease can be described as a “progressive, irreversible brain disorder that is characterized by a gradual deterioration of memory, reasoning, language, and eventually, physical function” (Santrock, 2010, p. 142). Alzheimer’s disease is actually a form of dementia.

25 Age 40 – 49 Years: Socioemotional Processes During this age span, my children will be school aged. As such, I will be steadily interacting with their teachers, as well as friend’s parents. I hope to widen my circle of friends, as well as promote social interaction, by joining a quality Catholic church community. I also wish to deepen my connections with my spouse, children, mother, and siblings. I believe that attending church more often during this time period can truly be beneficial in several ways. In addition, to widening my social circle, it will also keep me in closer contact with God. Research has also shown that individual’s who attend church regularly, have less self-rated health problems than those who do not.

26 Age 50 – 50 Years: Biological Processes Although the fifties may be considered the new forties, I must continue on maintaining and promoting a healthy lifestyle. This includes such aspects as proper sleep, nutrition, regular exercise, yearly physician wellness visits, dental care, and yearly mammograms. I may be experiencing different pains in my joints and bones due to arthritis and/or osteoporosis; things may not be as easy for me to do as they used to be. I also may be beginning and finishing the stages of menopause during this age span. Specifically, menopause can be described as, “the complete cessation of a woman’s mensuration, which usually occurs in the late forties or early fifties” (Santrock, 2010, p. 457). Menopause may also negatively affect my sexual interest and or function. However, this is something that I should speak to my physician about if I should experience such negative symptoms, in order to be prescribed appropriate medications to remedy the issue.

27 Age 50 – 59 Years: Cognitive Processes During this age span, I must continue on in practicing daily mind exercises in order to prevent certain cognitive diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease and/or dementia. I must be on the look out for any early warning signs, such as mild cognitive impairment. Mild cognitive impairment can be described as cognitive impairments that are slightly greater than an individual would experience as a result of normal aging. Aside from partaking in daily reading activities, an additional mind activity can be achieved through my professional duties. As our required text states: “Use it or lose it” (Santrock, 2010, p. 266).

28 Age 50 – 59 Years: Socioemotional Processes During this age span, I should have many sources in which to provide me with healthy adult social interaction. Some items may include via interaction with my spouse, children, family members, church members, and co-workers. I may be dealing with the death and emotional pain of one of my dogs during this age period, as by this time they will have greatly aged, and experiencing grief. Specifically, grief can be defined as, “the emotional numbness, disbelief, separation anxiety, despair, sadness, and loneliness that accompany the loss of someone we love” (Santrock, 2010, p. 659). Although such a loss may be imminent, it will be devastating to me, and deeply felt within my soul. Although this loss may never be truly healed, perhaps the rescuing of another pup in need will help me to overcome this life obstacle.

29 Age 60 – 69 Years: Biological Processes Although the sixties are entering upon the elder years, I do feel that it is still a young age in which to be. Currently, my mother is now in her sixties, and has not one wrinkle. Despite this factor, her body does ache, and she has developed blood clots in her legs which must be regulated by Coumadin as well as weekly physician and lab visits. My mother’s only flaw is being a tad overweight, but besides this she lives a very healthy lifestyle. This proves to me the importance of treating my body as best as I can, so that it is still loyal to me during these later years.

30 Age 60 – 69 Years: Cognitive Processes During this age span, I must still partake in mind-related activities in order to keep my brain healthy. My own children may now have had their own children, and so I must learn how to become a grandmother, as well as mentor and advisor. In addition, it may benefit me cognitively to practice some creativity; for example by learning how to play the violin. Researchers are now stating the benefits of creativity in association with increased cognitive functioning as we age.

31 Age 60 – 69 Years: Socioemotional Processes During this age span, I may be experiencing my mother in her old age. She may have physical and/or mental impairments, in which I will have to emotionally cope with. Perhaps my relationship with my siblings will grow even deeper over this sad life transition. I hope to have strong emotional relationships with my spouse, children, and even grand-children. Hopefully, I also have some quality friends in which I can interact and simply enjoy life with. I highly agree with the Kubler-Ross Stages of Dying theory in relation to personal loss. This theory consists of five stages; which includes denial and isolation, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. This theory can be applied to an individual’s acceptance in regards to their own preparation for dying and or to an individual coping with a loved one’s imminent death.

32 Age 70 – 79 Years: Biological Processes During this age span, it is crucial to maintain and promote a healthy lifestyle. I am physically going to be feeling the effects of my age during this time span; for example, body aches, arthritis, dry skin, dry mouth, etc. It is important to go to the physician on a regular basis in order to address any possible health concerns. It is also important to take all prescribed medications as is required in order to properly treat any health issues that I may have. My sleep patterns may change, where I go to bed earlier and wake up earlier. Hopefully, I am still completely independent and so not require any assistance in terms of a cane, walker, and/or wheelchair.

33 Age 70 – 79 Years: Cognitive Processes I hope that during this time period, I experience no mental impairments and or illnesses; for example, short-term memory loss, Alzheimer's disease and/or dementia. It is important to continue exercising my brain on a daily basis; by way of reading and doing word-searches. Final decisions in regards to my Living Will and Advanced Directives should also be thought upon and revised if needed.

34 Age 70 – 79 Years: Socioemotional Processes During this time period, I may be experiencing the imminent events of illness and death; in regards to possibly my spouse, siblings, friends, neighbors, and acquaintances. My social circle may be dwindling due to such circumstances, and perhaps even due to the fact of my own limited independence. These factors may result in increased feelings of loneliness, hopelessness, fear, isolation, and depression. It will be important for me to maintain a close relationship with my children, grandchildren, and perhaps even great-grandchildren. As per the required textbook, women are better able to cope with the loss of their spouse than vice versa. The text goes on to explain that women are emotionally stronger since we are the emotional components of a relationship; whereas, men are caught off guard by the emotional pain, since they are used to providing more financially than emotionally.

35 Age 80 and Beyond: Biological Processes I hope that during this time period my body has not failed me especially since I practiced healthy living throughout life. I hope that I still have my full independence and live in my own home setting requiring little to no outside assistance. I may require more quality sleep during this time period; including taking naps during the daytime, going to sleep early, and waking up early. My appetite may be more decreased than in previous years, and it may be beneficial to take vitamins in order to affirm that I am receiving the proper nutrients. In addition, I must ensure that I am taking all prescription medications as prescribed; perhaps with the assistance of a weekly pill box.

36 Age 80 and Beyond: Cognitive Processes Although I hope that I am suffering no cognitive impairments during this age period, it is highly probable that I may be experiencing some type of memory loss. The more common type of memory loss I may be encountering is termed semantic memory loss. Semantic memory can be described as, “a person’s knowledge about the world, including fields of expertise, general academic knowledge, and everyday knowledge about meanings of words, famous individuals, important places, and common things” (Santrock, 2010, p. 254). I may also be mentally preparing for and/or fearing my own possible death, which becomes more imminent as I age during this time span.

37 Age 80 and Beyond: Socioemotional Processes During this time period my social life may be considerably decreased due to the death of my peers. It is important to try and maintain some sort of social interaction; be it by going to church, or talking on the phone with my children. I also would hope that I would receive weekly visits from my children, grandchildren and/or great-grandchildren. Socially and emotionally this would give me something great to look forward to each new week, as well as help decrease possible feelings of loneliness and isolation. I hope that during this age span, I am able to come to terms with my own imminent death – emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. As per the text, “increasing thinking and conversing about death, and an increased sense of integrity developed through a positive life review, may help older adults accept death” (Santrock, 2010, p. 653).

38 REFERENCES:REFERENCES: Santrock, J.W. (2010). “A Topical Approach to Lifespan Development”; Fifth Edition. McGraw-Hill; New York, N.Y.


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