People aged 90 triple during past 30 years

Added by on November 18, 2011

A study released Thursday said the number of people over age 90 is rapidly growing as life-expectancy continues to increase in the U.S.

During 1980 there were 720,000 Americans aged at least 90 according to the U.S. Census Bureau. The number has tripled to 1.9m during the past 30 years and could reach more than 9m, halfway through this century in 2050.

People that make it to their 90th birthday are expected to live another five years and people that see their 100th birthday are likely to live another two years.

The increase in the number of people aged 90 and over is attributed to improvements in nutrition and public health, a decline in smoking, overall increased education, and a reduction in the number of strokes.

About 69% of people aged 85-89 report they have a disability – which includes hearing or vision loss or another physical limitation. The percentage of people with a disability increases to 83% for the age group between 90 and 94.

There are three times more women over the age of 90 as compared to men over age 90. Approximately 80% of women aged 90 or over are widowed, compared to 40% of men aged 90 or over that say they are still married.