Monday, September 30, 2013
It’s not just dementia and cognitive decline that makes people more uncertain with age; changes in rationality and the way the elderly evaluate risk could explain why they are more likely to make the wrong decisions affecting everything from their health to their finances.
While numerous studies have documented a drop in cognitive function with age, there isn’t solid data to explain what drives this decline in decision-making, particularly in the face of uncertainty. But according to the latest research, poor choices made by the elderly can’t be attributed to their lack of math skills or a fear of financial losses. In the study, people over age 65 tended to be inconsistent when making decisions where there was one obviously correct answer, such as choosing between a definite win of $5 and a lottery with indefinite odds of winning the same amount./.../