Retirement; like your parents, but way cooler
In 1991 Billy and Akaisha Kaderli retired at the age
of 38. Now, into their 4th decade of this
financially independent lifestyle, they invite you
to take advantage of their wisdom and experience.
with Jaw and Neck Pain in Your Retirement
Facial aging goes deeper than wrinkles and
sagging skin - it can also present neck and jaw issues as you get older.
Neck pain is
reported in 15 percent of people, and most of them experience it between the
ages of 40 and 60. A similar percentage of seniors experience neck and jaw
symptoms later in life, including the occurrence of temporomandibular joint
disorders, tension headaches, and bruxism. Most of these conditions are linked
to the presence of stress. Stress is also the number one reason
why people may choose to retire early. However, early retirement is not for
everyone, and the strain it can place on financial and mental health can also
accelerate the occurrence of jaw and neck issues.
Why Seniors Can Experience Neck or Jaw Pain as They Get Older
There are several reasons why you may
experience neck or jaw pain as you age. Firstly, as you get older, your muscles
can lose strength and mass.
According to published scientific studies, muscle mass decreases 3-8 percent
per decade after the age of 30. This, in turn, can impact the connection between
your jawbone and skull as your muscles get weaker. Additionally, some seniors
experience neck pain due to poor posture or muscle strain. This disrupts the
alignment of your neck, and can cause aches and stiffness.
Treating TMJ As A Senior
The risks of developing the
temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ) increases with age. While a majority
of seniors experience
mild symptoms of TMJ, if left untreated, the side effects can worsen
considerably. Research has shown that the occurrence of TMJ can be more
prevalent amongst women than men. However, more severe cases are notable
amongst men rather than women. If you do have mild symptoms like a click
sound in your jaw, mild neck or jaw pain, or swelling, there are several
effective treatments you can try at home for little or no cost. If there is
swelling, applying an ice pack to the area can help to reduce the
inflammation. You may also find relief in
practicing exercises to even out your jawline like improving your
posture and facial stretches. This can help with an asymmetrical jawline or
misaligned jaw. Finally, try switching up your diet to reduce any stress on
your jaw. Including soft foods like yogurt, smoothies and oatmeal not only
reduces tension in your jaw, but is healthy for overall diet as you age.
Addressing Stress-Induced Neck and Jaw Pain
While TMJ can often be a by-product of
aging, it can also be caused by stress - for example, the stress of
stretching retirement finances. Therefore, addressing any stress triggers
can also help you relieve any neck or jaw tension you may be experiencing.
For instance, bruxism (teeth grinding or jaw clenching) has been linked to
anxiety and stress. This can damage your teeth over time, and can cause
tension headaches and jaw pain. Many experts recommend that seniors engage
in some form of physical activity to
manage their stress levels in older years. Additionally, speaking to a
trusted friend or trained therapist can provide a great sounding board for
mental and financial stress you may be experiencing.
Like every other aspect of your life, your
body will change with age, and you may encounter some common medical issues
like neck or jaw pain. The trick is to narrow down the cause of it, and not
leave it unaddressed for too long. Doing so sooner rather than later means
you can focus on the joys of retiring early - without any of the pain.
About the Authors
Early Lifestyle appeals to a different
kind of person – the person who prizes their
independence, values their time, and who doesn’t
want to mindlessly follow the crowd.
Retire Early Lifestyle Blog
About Billy & Akaisha