Saying "old age — no joy" exhausted our attitude to the subject. Moreover, in a society mention of this stage of life is often ignored and taboo. Old age is seen as a close proximity to death. Since this is the final stage of life, the problem of old age and aging will always have its importance.
Theory Mechnikov: saturation of the life and death instinct
Beginning of the scientific study of old age, put in the XIX century Mechnikov. He developed the theory orthobiosis, in which he analyzed the problem of the natural, physiological and premature, pathological aging. Scientist interested in the life and the mechanisms of the aging process, which he wrote in his book "Studies of optimism" and "Nature of Man." Mechnikov is often credited with the statement that age — it is a disease. In fact, he said that most people die of diseases, not of old age as such. Swordsmen understands old age as a natural stage of life. The degree of aging is allocated depending on the saturation of life. And if in the eighty years of this time has not yet come, there will come a time and in a man going to work anyway "instinct" death. " Swordsmen comes to an interesting conclusion about the meaning and purpose of life in old age. "People, especially those who lived a long time, do not ask a question, what lives man in the world. The reason for this is to complete the development of a sense of life, that is the instinctive desire to live, which is connected at the same time the strongest fear of death, "- said the scientist.
Theory of the first half of the twentieth century
After the study of the phenomenon of aging Mechnikov many decades conducted only in the medical way. But in the first half of the twentieth century, a number of theories of aging. First, the molecular theory of aging developed A. Pictet, W. Alpatov about. Nastyukova, K. Parhon and other scientists. Within this group of theories aging seen as a consequence of accumulation with age unfavorable for the metabolism of the optical isomers of proteins.
Second, the theory that consider aging as a result of changes in the genetic apparatus of cells. Third, the theory of auto-intoxication — the destruction of the immune properties and control tissues in the body.
Aging and theory stress
We can not ignore the theory of the famous Hans Selye — the father of stress. Selye believed that stress is a wear rate of the human body in the process of life and corresponds to an intense life. In the view of aging Selye idea was strongly related to the mechanisms of adaptation. "Adaptability,-he said — is the most outstanding feature of life." Thus, stress is a mechanism of adaptation to the environment, but as long as no internal begins fraying human resources. Are limits not only the individual, but also the adaptability of species. Many scientists agree with the findings of Hans Selye that the sharp increase in cardiovascular disease and cancer — the result of depletion of adaptation.
Adaptive-regulatory theory of aging
For eighty years of the XX century began research into the underlying processes of aging. On this basis, the scientists were doing fairly optimistic forecasts of slowing aging and increasing longevity of species. Predictions were made on the merits of the end of XX century (plus another twenty years). The dominant position occupied adaptive-regulatory theory of aging developed by V. Frolkis and his school. According to this theory, aging — a natural stage of the existence of a living organism. That is, the right to look for the period that starts the process of aging — he laid still at the level of the embryo. Every living system is self-regulating, so that it is able to adapt to changing conditions. Controller adaptation is vitaukta process, characterized by the author as anti-aging. Vitaukta — what determines the stability and duration of the living system and helps maintain adaptability. From the standpoint of the theory of human life can not be associated with the speed and pace of the destruction of the organism, its aging, as was done before. The average life span, according to Frolkis, more rightly discern the mechanisms to maintain the reliability of the organism, the ability to compensate for violations occurred.
Aging — is, first of all, the biological process. But human aging not only the biological state of the body the dying. The man — the only one of all the living creature that is aware of its mortality, as well as the death of the preceding age. For the study of old age a little achievements of Gerontology: it is necessary to take into account the socio-cultural component associated with the perception of old age in culture.