Nonagenarians

What's another way of describing someone who is a nonagenarian?

And the answer: they're in their 90s.

Photo Courtesy: MAX MUMBY/INDIGO. 

The odds of living to the age of 90 has increased markedly in the past century. In fact, the number of nonagenarians in the US and UK has more than doubled since 1994. Looking ahead, the number of people who reach age 100, or centenarians, will increase eightfold worldwide by the year 2050.

The growing number of individuals over the age of 90 is indicative of advancements of public health and improved living conditions over the course of the century. Interestingly, the nonagenarians of today have lived through ever-changing perceptions of how and which forms of medicine work: most spent their lives believing cigarettes weren't bad for your lungs, feared polio at one point or another, or lacked a vaccine for a disease that hardly even exists today.

As public health is a constantly growing field, we can expect this trend to continue on its upward trajectory. According to Pew Research Center, China will be the leader in centenarians by 2050, followed by Italy and Japan. The UK and US are predicted to age a bit slower, with a predicted 9.7 centenarians per 10,000 people in the U.S. by 2050.

For more stats on our aging populations, check out this Pew Research Center article.


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