Health Risks to Look Out For as You Retire

Retirement is something to look forward to. It’s a time to relax, travel, take time for yourself, and reap the rewards of spending a lifetime working. As people enter a retirement age, there are certain aspects to their health that they should keep an eye out for in order to maintain a healthy retirement lifestyle. It is hard to enjoy the relaxing perks to retirement if you are ill or experiencing a dip in your health. Knowing about the risks more common as you retire will help with prevention so that your golden years are relaxing and not peppered with health problems.

Stress

You’d think retirement is all about relaxing and living life at the pace you want, but in reality many retirees feel more stressed than they did beforehand. Retirement involves a lot of changes, and big changes have the potential to lead to a lot of stress. Financial concerns are a major cause of stress as many potential retirees can’t even retire due to financial stresses. Living off of a fixed budget and potentially downsizing living expenses in order to live comfortably with a new budget can be a stressful change.

Stress has the potential to worsen or create health issues for everyone, and the risks get more serious with age. High blood pressure caused by stress can create a higher risk for heart disease. Headaches, digestive issues, body aches, weight gain, and depression can all be caused by stress as well, so being aware of the stresses that come with retirement and taking steps to reduce stress are important.

Weight Gain

Not only is weight gain a symptom connected to stress, weight gain is also common in retirement for other reasons. Weight gain is an aspect of getting older in general, but retirement has the potential to accelerate weight gain due to a change in everyday routine. Waking up early, eating, being active during the day, eating meals at similar times, and then suddenly retiring and changing your body’s activity levels and meal times can have an effect on your weight. Since so many of those in retirement spend their time relaxing and taking a break from the heavily scheduled working life, the lack of activity can add some unwanted pounds around the middle.

This isn’t true for everyone as many of those in retirement spend their retirement focusing on hobbies, and many of them like travelling or fishing are active enough to keep them in a healthy weight. Whereas a little weight gain is not a huge issue, there are some effects of weight gain that can be serious in a retirement age. Diabetes, stroke, heart disease, and osteoarthritis are all linked to obesity and can be very dangerous after age 60. Having a steady workout routine is important in order to stay healthy in retirement.

Depression

Working is not just a means to make money; it also gives a person a sense of purpose, causes a person to be more active, and offers social interaction. Because of this, retirement can cause people to lose their feelings of purpose and become more introverted, which isn’t ideal for everyone. Stressing about finances, experiencing health issues, and lacking interaction can all lead to a depression that is common for retirees to feel. It’s important for retirees to create a new schedule that combats the issues with depression. Having a hobby and workout regimen be an important part of a day to day schedule will not only help issues with depression, it will also help stresses and health issues involved with weight gain. Take part in swimming to combat arthritis, keep a garden to help with flexibility, or go fishing in order to keep an active hobby.

Depression is an issue that doesn’t just affect one part of the body or mind; it’s a problem that affects everything. In fact, it affects all of the other concerns that retirees are already at risk for including stress, weight gain, and other common health issues. It’s important to know the risks of depression associated with retiring and work to prevent those feelings before they happen.

Retirement is an amazing milestone and should be celebrated by retirees that reach that point in their lives. It’s a time to go at your own pace, become accustomed to your new lifestyle, make more time for family members, create a workout routine that works best for you, and focus on a hobby you’re passionate about. Knowing the health risks that are common for those heading towards retirement is important for prevention and treatment. Otherwise, it’s a time to take a step back and enjoy the life your hard work gave you.

Author bio: Chelsy is a writer from Montana who is now living in Boise, Idaho. She graduated with her journalism degree from the University of Montana in 2012. She loves her animals, listens to talk radio, and prefers her coffee cold. Follow her on Twitter!

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