The Difference Between Gerontology and Geriatrics

Gerontology and geriatrics are two terms that are often used interchangeably, but there is a distinct difference between the two.

Gerontology is the study of aging, while geriatrics is the study of illness and disease of the elderly.

Gerontologists  study the physical, mental, and social changes in people as they age. They may work in research, education, or direct service settings. On the other hand, Geriatricians are medical doctors who specialize in the care of older adults. They focus on the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of age-related diseases and conditions.

What Is Gerontology?

Gerontology is the study of aging. It encompasses all aspects of the aging process, from the cellular level to the societal level. Gerontology is a multidisciplinary field that draws on knowledge from psychology, sociology, anthropology, biology, and medicine. In the context of healthcare, gerontologists work to promote healthy aging and improve the quality of life for older adults.

As with many disciplines, gerontology has several subfields focused on specific aspects of the aging process. These include:

  • Biological Gerontology
  • Social Gerontology
  • Environmental Gerontology
  • Biological Gerontology

Biogerontology is the study of aging at the cellular and molecular levels. Researchers in this field seek to understand the changes in cells and tissues as we age. They hope to identify the mechanisms underlying age-related diseases and develop interventions to prevent, delay, or even reverse the underlying processes of aging

Social Gerontology


Social gerontology is the study of aging in a social context. It focuses on the relationships between older adults and their families, caregivers, and the wider society. Researchers in this field seek to understand how aging affects social roles and relationships. They also work to develop policies and programs that improve the quality of life for older adults.

Environmental Gerontology

Environmental gerontology studies the interaction between people and their physical and social environments. Researchers in this field seek to identify environmental factors that contribute to healthy aging. They also work to develop interventions to improve the built environment and make it more age-friendly.



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