The three types of aging are: biological aging, psychological aging and social aging. These are the categories of aging used to define how we age in the biopsychosocial model of health and illness.

Last Updated: 24 September 2023

Three jars representing the three types of aging

As we age and grow older we can classify aging into three different categories.

  1. Biological Aging
  2. Psychological Aging
  3. Social Aging

You are be able to relate each type of aging too any different age group. So not only to young children, but also to older adults.

These are different to the stages of aging.

Type 1: Biological Aging

  • Biological aging refers to the physical changes that occur in the body as a person gets older. It includes changes in organ function, metabolism, and cellular processes.
  • Examples of this is where you will see the physical signs of aging like: wrinkles in the skin, degeneration of joints and changes in eyesight and hearing.
  • There is a difference between biological aging vs chronological aging.

Type 2: Psychological Aging

  • Psychological aging refers to the changes in cognitive abilities, emotional well-being, and mental health that can occur with age.
  • Examples of this is where you will notice changes in short-term or long-term memory, attention, problem-solving, and overall psychological functioning.
  • This is where the brain is aging and where we can notice personality changes.

Type 3: Social Aging

  • Social aging refers to the changes in an individual’s social roles, relationships, and interactions as they age versus others around them.
  • You might think of this as a person knowing they are a mature adult.
  • Social aging is when a person transitions from active work to retirement, from a parent to becoming a grandparent, or becoming a caregiver for elderly parents.
  • Examples of this is where you experience changes in informal social networks, social support, and social engagement. Also, formal environments like workplaces.
  • Social aging is heavily influenced by the perception of aging that is part of a society’s culture that person lives in and grew up in.
Gary Kirwan

Gary Kirwan

Founder and Host of BioHackers Lab Podcast

Been interested in biohacking concepts and products since first testing what it is like drinking butter in my coffee years ago. My ultimate goal is healthy aging through exercise, diet, social interaction and psychology.