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Old 07-17-2013, 09:59 PM   #21
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Like the only legitimate use for a brain is working.
+1
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Old 07-17-2013, 10:08 PM   #22
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Like the only legitimate use for a brain is working.
Not all work is guaranteed to stimulate brain cells either. I've had a few manual labor jobs that required very little brain power.
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Old 07-17-2013, 10:11 PM   #23
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Did they bring up forced ER versus planned for and voluntary? The idea being a forced ER can lead to depression and sitting in front of the TV.
+1

I have yet to see *any* of these "ER is not good for you" studies that distinguish between those who choose to ER, and those who are forced to ER (particularly when forced due to health issues). I am positive that one would see drastically different results between the two groups.
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Old 07-17-2013, 10:32 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by jollystomper View Post
+1

I have yet to see *any* of these "ER is not good for you" studies that distinguish between those who choose to ER, and those who are forced to ER (particularly when forced due to health issues). I am positive that one would see drastically different results between the two groups.
I think there are some retirement studies that do try to control for this (if memory serves) but I agree that failing to do so is a problem.

That said, I do think that some people retire voluntarily and don't really do anything in retirement to exercise the brain, doing nothing more mentally taxing than sitting on the couch watching TV.

I suspect that for these people even a boring job does provide more mental stimulation than what they do after retirement.

I suspect that for most of us here we don't have a problem getting adequate mental stimulation after retirement and may get more than when working. Just the fact that we seek out a forum like this makes us a different bunch of people than typical retirees.

I think the true message shouldn't be not to retire, but to seek out mental stimulation and brain exercise once you do retire. And, if someone can't do that and has no ideas except working to do it, then maybe that person really shouldn't retire.
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Old 07-17-2013, 10:42 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by jollystomper View Post
+1

I have yet to see *any* of these "ER is not good for you" studies that distinguish between those who choose to ER, and those who are forced to ER (particularly when forced due to health issues). I am positive that one would see drastically different results between the two groups.
Yeah, it's crucial to differentiate the voluntary from the involuntary retirees. It's also crucial to distinguish between people who are socially and intellectually active in their retirement from people who are not.

Fwiw, the article I read on this subject did make this qualification:

Quote:
[...] Keeping active and social, whatever the form, promotes brain health and prevents degeneration.

For some, an active life after retirement works just as well as extending a career.

"My parents are retired but they're busier than ever," said Heather Snyder, director of medical and scientific operations for the Alzheimer's Association. "They're taking classes at their local university, they're continuing to attend lectures and they're continuing to stay cognitively engaged and socially engaged in their lives."

[....] What's more important, Snyder said, is "staying cognitively active, staying socially active, continue to be engaged in whatever it is that's enjoyable to you."
Later Retirement Reduces Risk For Alzheimer

Unfortunately, that qualification came near the end of the article, and most people will just hear the headline.
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Old 07-17-2013, 10:49 PM   #26
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I think the true message shouldn't be not to retire, but to seek out mental stimulation and brain exercise once you do retire. And, if someone can't do that and has no ideas except working to do it, then maybe that person really shouldn't retire.
I agree with that.

The study authors say that people ought to be able to work as long as they want (assuming they can still do the job). That's a comment on the voluntary vs. involuntary distinction, I think. The study I looked at was done in France, btw, where a lot of civil servants are mandated to retire at 65. That's not a good policy, from a public health perspective. If people want to work, let them work. Force them to retire and you give them the sense they are being put out to pasture, their useful years are done, they are no longer needed... From there it's a short step to being a sad lump watching TV.
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Old 07-17-2013, 11:03 PM   #27
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At a past megacorp, I saw a man in his 80s still coming to work with a walker. In the afternoon, people walking by his cubicle shook their head when they saw him nodding off in front of his CRT. Good grief! Can't blame him for taking naps because, well, I am a lot younger, and occasionally take naps now, but then I am at home on early retirement, and I can do as I damn well please.

I did not know what his job was, but wondered if his financial condition really required him to work. And slow as he was, I wondered about his quality of work. I guessed it had to be satisfactory for megacorp to keep him, but golly, when a guy's in his 80s, should he not be somewhere else better than a cube?
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Old 07-18-2013, 12:11 AM   #28
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....... I guessed it had to be satisfactory for megacorp to keep him, but golly, when a guy's in his 80s, should he not be somewhere else better than a cube?
Yeah, like a box or an urn!

But I'd prefer to be on a Viking ship....

"Lars, do you smell something burning?...... ENGINE FIRE! Abandon ship! Swim for shore!!!"

"But what about Telly, he can't swim?!"

"Aw, leave'm, let's go!"

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Old 07-18-2013, 12:51 AM   #29
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My wife pointed it out to me. I told her that I'd chance it.

My wife pointed it out to me too. I said "Who are you?"
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Old 07-18-2013, 01:13 AM   #30
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Yeah, like a box or an urn!
Well, as I often say here in this forum, I do not think I will live to the 80s, let alone going to work like that man at that age. That man already beat me, no matter what he and I will do from here.

And one more thing. Problem with walking he might have, but demented he certainly was not, though he looked sleepy at times.

So, fellow geezers, dust off your CV, and start sending some feelers out for some more w*rk. Your brain and perhaps even your body will thank you for it.
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Old 07-18-2013, 06:31 PM   #31
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Correlation does not imply causation.

If we hypothesize that retiring early CAUSES dementia, then we could test that by negation. That is, no working person should have dementia.

This turns out not to be the case.

I suspect that what we are seeing in this report is just the usual 'use it or lose it' phenomena. If someone moves from being mentally active to full-blown couch potato, pretty soon they'll have all the mental acuity of a dollop of sour cream with chives.
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Old 07-18-2013, 06:52 PM   #32
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If we hypothesize that retiring early CAUSES dementia, then we could test that by negation. That is, no working person should have dementia.
It is true that I have seen demented people at work.

And some even got promoted to management.
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Old 07-18-2013, 08:11 PM   #33
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It is true that I have seen demented people at work.

And some even got promoted to management.
I knew a few that got promoted because they were demented.
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Old 07-19-2013, 08:40 AM   #34
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Just my two cents now where did I put my car keys ?
They're either in the refrigerator or in the underwear drawer.

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Old 07-19-2013, 09:17 AM   #35
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I knew a few that got promoted because they were demented.
I think the movie Being There explores this concept.
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Old 07-22-2013, 08:59 PM   #36
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There was a study in some country that showed that working later reduces your risk of developing dementia. Basically implying that those who ER have no mental stimulation.
Should be: "basically implying that those who continue to work necessarily derive mental stimulation from such employment". Which is certainly not universally accurate.

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I think the movie Being There explores this concept.
I think what our insightful young friend is saying is that we welcome the inevitable seasons of nature, but we're upset by the seasons of our economy.
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Old 07-23-2013, 09:04 AM   #37
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Did anyone else see the segment on CNBC yesterday where they say that retiring early increases your risk of dementia?
I don't seem to recall seeing it
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Old 07-23-2013, 09:27 AM   #38
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I am too demented to understand the point of that segment.
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Old 07-23-2013, 10:09 AM   #39
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my stepmom just retired "for good". She's 87 years old and until a few weeks ago was teaching nursing. She was forced to retire from a high brow academic university at age 67 and didn't feel ready. So she got this part time gig - teaching 2 classes per term. At 87 she still doesn't feel ready... but her BS bucket finally got full.

My dad was already retired when he met her - he tried, unsuccessfully, to talk her into retiring for the years they were together before he died... She argued that her brain would turn to mush if she retired. She enjoyed teaching and felt if she stopped her brain would seize up and stop functioning.

It must be a genetic/familial thing. Her older brother is still a licensed physician who does rounds... he's in his early 90's. He's also stated that if you slow down, your brain stops.
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