oa South African Family Practice - Is retirement bad for your health? : peripheralia

Volume 57, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 2078-6190
  • E-ISSN: 2078-6204



There is an extraordinary concept in the retirement industry called "dying too late", which refers to those who live too long after retirement and run out of funds. I believe this is a worry that most of us have. Many people can now be retired for up to 20 or 30 years. This is partly because people in rich countries are starting to live longer, thanks, in part, to statins, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors and aspirin, but also because they are starting to retire earlier, in larger numbers. Apparently, the lowest average age of retirement is in Luxembourg, where men are retiring at 57 years, although the official age at which to receive a pension is 65. Demographers now talk about the "young old" who are in their 70s and 80s and still in reasonably good shape, and the "old old", who are in their 90s and 100s, who are mostly frail and in need of care.

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