Study: Older adults handle pain better than younger counterparts

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Adults 50 and older cope better with chronic pain than younger adults, according to a new study.

The research, which examined detailed data from 5,823 black and white adults over eight years, found that older blacks and whites were better able to cope with their pain, had less trouble falling asleep and had fewer depressive symptoms than younger members of their respective racial groups.

A combination of generational characteristics and attitudes, life experiences and age-related health expectations may be at work, said healthcare experts from the University of Michigan and the University of South Florida.

"Older people may feel that pain is just something that you deal with ... or because they feel that pain is just a normal part of getting older," said one of the experts.

She added that younger people might endure more negative effects because they have job and family stress in addition to their pain. They could also have different expectations about pain treatment and experiencing pain at a young age.

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