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Aging Americans bristle at being described as elderly, senior, or, well, aging




HAMBURG, GERMANY - MAY 03:  Elderly visitors with walking stick walk through a trade fair at the “Seniorentag 2012” senior citizens convention on May 3, 2012 in Hamburg, Germany.
HAMBURG, GERMANY - MAY 03: Elderly visitors with walking stick walk through a trade fair at the “Seniorentag 2012” senior citizens convention on May 3, 2012 in Hamburg, Germany.
Joern Pollex/Getty Images

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America isn’t as young as it once was. By 2030 approximately one-fifth of the US population will be over the age of 65. As the population continues to age, descriptions such as “elderly” or “senior” can be found offensive.

People are living longer, but don’t want to be labeled as old. According to NPR’s Ina Jaffe, terms like “silver tsunami,” “senior citizen,” and “successful aging” have been increasingly used in news stories and have angered the growing community.

What descriptions are most offensive? What words or phrases should be used to describe the aging population in the United States? Have you ever been offended by an age-based description?