Retiring Later Could Help You Fend Off Alzheimer's

A new study finds that working longer can lower the risk of dementia

by Richard Eisenberg • Next Avenue
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You may already know that delaying your retirement can be a smart financial move because it’ll give you more years to contribute to your 401(k) and perhaps plump up your pension, which means less of need to draw on your savings or Social Security. But a fascinating study released today at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference in Boston suggests that pushing your retirement back could also help lower your risk of developing Alzheimer’s diseaseand other types of dementia.

Risk Cut 3.2 Percent a Year
Researchers at INSERM, the French government’s health research agency, studied 429,000 retirees in France who were formerly self-employed and discovered that their risk of having a diagnosis of dementia was reduced by 3.2 percent for each extra year they worked before retirement.

(MORE: Alzheimer’s and Stress: A New Study Confirms the Link)

“In other words, all other risk factors being equal, those who retired at 65 years old had a 14.6 percent lower risk of getting dementia than those who retired at 60,” the scientist who led the study, Carole Dufouil, told me.

The link between later retirement and dementia was a bit stronger for men than women, she added.

“We were not surprised by the results, but we were surprised by the robustness of the findings,” Dufouil said. “Still, we need to be cautious as these results might not be generalizable. But this should encourage further research on the topic.”

Photo courtesy of auremar/

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First Published Thu, 2013-07-25 14:12

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