Does age reflect our wisdom and life experience?
Does more age generally mean wiser?
No, not necessarily. At an individual level I'd say yes, but in comparison to the rest of the new comers that come along, maybe not. (it all depends, as you know) Older people (not to be mistakenly for old people) usually have more memories to talk about. A middle aged person could easily not have the same level of education or common sense as a younger adult. This world is a constantly changing place, and it gets to a point where you don't keep up with things as easily as you used to. Elderly people are often times set in their ways, and they're probably more prone to being stubborn than young people. Stubborn is not a bad trait to have at all, but they might have it excessively. A healthy amount of stubbornness in people of all age groups is good because without it you get manipulated too easily.
Consider an older adult who spent most of his adult life putting on his pants one leg at a time and going to some dead end job. He may not have time for self enrichment because he was too busy going to his boring job and coming home to a miserable life. I wouldn't call this average, but its one example of why a younger person might be much better off than an older person. Everyone is different, and there are a variety of factors involved.
When does aging start to outweigh the wisdom the comes with age?
As INDIVIDUALS get older, they most often get wiser at different levels. One exception that might occur as much as half of the time is a less desirable personality. Although personality isn't exactly part of what wisdom is, it reflects on the person's character as well as how good their social skills are.
I've read in different places that elderly adults are often times happier than young people. In contrast, I've read that self esteem is highest around the age of 60 and it supposedly plummets after that. If this is true, my guess it that it has a lot to do with not working at a job anymore and feeling less productive.
IQ scores reportedly drop during the 20's. The average person even shrinks less than 1/2 an inch during their 20's. Facts like these make the 20's seem not so youthful after all, don't they? Most people reach their prime in their early 20's and this is the time when fertility is at its peak as well.
I think its worth staying alive until something takes your life (something which you have no control over.) On the other hand, if you're in your mid stages of Alzheimer's Disease you're already dead as far as I'm concerned, because such a disease directly takes away who you are. Ideally, I'd like to see some good treatments for aging to come out so that an "old age" would be just a number, if not a good thing because of wisdom. A lot of opportunity for life experience gets lost due to the cruel nature of aging (eventually), since aging slows you down. Also, if there is chronic pain you may have joy but you're probably not a happy camper.