EDITING : 2024.4.22 월 18:51
The Gachon Herald
Everyone Grows OldThe Aging Simulation: Experiencing the Life of the Elderly
Oh Da-Hae  |  712dahae@naver.com
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Updated : 2020.03.16  23:17:55
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 Why do the elderly push other people to take a seat on the subway? You must have frowned at the frustrating behavior of the elderly at least once. Most have negative perceptions of the elderly due to these experiences. But we all will become old one day. How does it feel to be an old man? We may act the same way that old men and women do now. Therefore, we should try to understand old people. Experience and empathize with the elderly.

 Location: The Korean Senior Citizens Association: Aging Simulation Center (58, Imjeong-ro, Yongsan-gu, Seoul)
 Price: Free

 1. Education and preparation before the experience
 Before entering the main experience, you will listen to a brief explanation to help understand the elderly. The standard age of the elderly is 65, and the first sense of aging is vision. Due to the deterioration of the sensory function, it becomes dull to salty and sweet taste, and it is easier to be exposed to the risk of fire because they can’t hear the boiling sound of the pot well. Brain cells shrink and memory declines. When this explanation was finished, we would start preparing for the experience. We wore clothes to experience the body of an 80-year-old man. We wear glasses that limit vision, sandbags that restrain joint movement, gloves and finger restraints. After wearing, we entered the experience room. As soon as I tried to enter, I could feel the difficulty in taking a step.

 2. Public life experience room
 The public life experience room is a room where regular family members share their lives with an elderly person. It consists of hallway, kitchen, living room, and visual, auditory, and tactile experience rooms. Visitors can experience the special space for elderly in this place by comparing the regular living space with the special space designed for the convenience of the elderly. You can see various tableware, table for wheelchair users, and induction designed for the elderly.

 3. Personal life experience room
 The personal life experience room is used by elderly individuals. The house consists of bathroom, sitting, bedroom space, and various handgrips on doors, and various furniture types and others. Through this experience space, we can experience the elderly’s difficulties in living alone. On the other hand, we could also experience the amenities provided to alleviate these difficulties. From floor bedding to regular bedding, we could see and experience a variety of bath products for the elderly.

 4. Walking Experience Space
 The walking experience space consists of a stair-experience and a wheelchair with slope-experience. You may experience and compare the specially designed staircase for elderly with regular staircase.

After putting on the experience-wear, it was very difficult to move due to having heavy arms, legs, and poor visibility. Taking even just one step was scary and everywhere I went I walked carefully and slowly. I acted like old man or woman who needs to hold onto handles and walk down the stairs slowly. I felt that life had become too hard and dangerous. It was also sad to think that the special supplies made for the elderly were so expensive that there would be only a few elderly people who could afford and use them.
Anyone can become an old man or woman and have an unhealthy body. Let's take care of ourselves from our youth in order to have a healthier old life. For retirement plans, people often only consider economic requirements. But I think a healthy body is a real old-age retirement plan. I hope you will also experience the aging simulation which will make the people understand the behaviors of their grandparents and think about their future life.

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