Sweden's pensioner paradox

3:39 min

The number of senior citizens in Sweden is growing, and as a recent report suggests, while many of the elderly have more health problems than they did 20 years ago, more pensioners are looking after themselves than ever before.

Nick Chipperfield has more on Sweden's pensioner paradox.

"I'm fine on my own. I've got my hands and feet, and my brain to think a bit with," says 97 year-old Viola Främst from Uppsala, speaking to Swedish Radio's Science programme.

Viola is one of a growing number of senior Swedes who while they have health problems, continue to perform basic tasks for themselves.

A report by the Stockholm-based Aging Research Centre, suggests that while the overall health of the oldest segment of the Swedish population showed no improvement over the past 20 years, it also found that more people in this group are able to manage on their own than was the case in the past.

The research is based on reports from between 600 and 900 participants from all over Sweden, over the course of 20 years.

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