Researchers discuss ways to overcome stubbornness in older adults

Families trying to help older adults to agree to supportive services or additional care often face the barrier of perceived stubbornness, which researchers say can be mitigated with proper intervention.

Investigators at the New Jersey Institute for Successful Aging, Rowan University School of Osteopathic Medicine and Penn State University say three-fourths of aging parents are perceived to insist, resist or persist following advice or help from their children regarding activities of daily living.

The goal of the research was to understand perceptions, and the researchers found the children and parents often saw these behaviors differently. Recognizing the perceptions of stubbornness and addressing why it's a concern for families could mitigate potential problems.

Results were published online in Journals of Gerontology: Psychology Sciences.