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Later Life Guide

Health issues and concerns of older adults: solutions, strategies, and support

Why Build a Collection of Information on Later Life?

This is part of a series, along with our collections on:

What does "Later Life" mean? A simple answer is the last couple - or several! - decades of someone's life. If we pick age 60 as the starting point, that's a lot of people in Santa Clara County, and growing (it's estimated that by 2030, nearly one in 4 people in our county will be aged 60 and older.)

What do common issues in later life have to do with aging well?

You'll see a lot written about "healthy aging", or "aging well", or "senior wellness". How happy and capable we are in later life depends on many different factors, and one person's aging well might not look at all like another's.

Amidst all this variation, though, our bodies change as we age in some predictable ways. Common physical changes may challenge the habits of a lifetime, so we need to adapt new habits to cope better with low vision or hearing, different reactions to high or low temperatures, and so on. We may need to learn new ways to keep our balance, or to keep moving easily. Sleep patterns change as we age. So do social or family patterns, sometimes leading to loneliness, grief, depression. Many people are terrified of losing memory, or changing cognition - but that's not inevitable. 

It's entirely possible to age well even with a chronic illness, to cope with the common issues of later life -- and to have happy, fulfilled years in ways that matter to you.


While PlaneTree Health Library strives to guide you to reliable, valid, up-to-date information, every person's situation is unique. Be sure to discuss information gathered from these resources with your health care providers to see if it is relevant to your individual situation. Health and medical information accessed through these websites is not intended to substitute for or to replace the advice or instruction of a health care professional. Likewise, legal and financial information is provided for educational purposes only. These webpages are no substitute for professional legal, financial, or social work advice.

PlaneTree Health Library is not responsible for the content on web sites accessed from our site. Each originating organization has sole responsibility for its web pages. Our intention is to provide patients, their families, and caregivers with trustworthy information to help them make informed decisions.

About PlaneTree Health Library

PlaneTree Health Library is committed to guiding people to trustworthy, accurate, and free-to-use health and medical information. We believe that being well-informed is key to taking better care of our health (and our families), and to work more effectively with our health care professionals. Our library is an all-online, curated  collection of links to the best resources for patient and consumer health.

While our work focuses on the information needs of people in Santa Clara County CA, many of those concerns are universal. Our content is freely available on the web to the general public at .

PlaneTree Health Library itself is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. It is independently funded by our community (since 2007), including support from the Sobrato Center, All Good Work, and Ninja Number.

The text on this page is copyright PlaneTree Health Library, licensed under Creative Commons CC BY-NC-SA 4.0. Linked contents are the responsibility of their creators or copyright holders.