Children are said to be the greatest blessing to us, but there are so many problems that parents often complain about, such as:
- Incessant crying
- Constant worrying
- Sleep deprivation
- 24/7 responsibility
- Nonstop caregiving
- Economic shocks
- Lack of privacy
- Reduced disposable income
With all those problems above, who would ever think being a parent is linked to having a longer life? A new study from Denmark supports the notion that having children can increase life expectancy.
What The Study is About
The Danish study is quite simple. The researchers published a study back in 2012 in which over 21,000 couples who were childless in 1994 chose to have in vitro fertilization (IVF). The women involved in the study had fertility problems. According to the observation of the researchers, women who did not bear a child had four times the probability to die compared to those who had children. As for the men, those who remained childless had two times the risk of dying early.
Some gerontology theories assume that having children deducts your total life expectancy. This is particularly applicable to those who stop having sex, which is a common problem for couples who have children. In fact, sexual activity is often correlated with a happy and healthy life. But the study mentioned above, which was published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, showed that the presence of kids does make a difference to a person’s lifespan. Take a look at the numbers below:
- There were a total of 21,276 couples in the study.
- 15,149 of them had children from 1994 to 2008.
- 5,354 of them remained childless.
- 33 of the women subsequently died after they gave birth though IVF deaths are quite rare.
- 56 of those who remained childless died after the IVF procedure.
- 119 men who had children died.
- 88 men who remained childless died as well.
- Although the men with children died more in number, those whose IVF didn’t work were outnumbered three to one. This means that childless men died at a higher rate than those with successful IVF.
The researchers took into account certain variables, including income, age, and education that also have an effect on life expectancy of a person. It was estimated that those who have children lived longer. There is no specific answer as to why those with children did live longer in the study, but it is theorized that those who cannot conceive are more at risk of death due to their fertility problem. Additionally, children are also considered an elixir of life.