Print this Post

How Long Will YOU Live in TEOTWAWKI?

How Long Will YOU Live in TEOTWAWKI?

How Long Will YOU Live in TEOTWAWKI?

Almost all people interested in surviving a world changing event are over the age of 35. A vast majority of the demographic is in the 35-54 age group.  These are interesting numbers and we know them because we have demographics across all of the Tin Hat Ranch sites. I guess you feel like you are going to live forever when you are young.  As a youngster, that might seem true, as a child born today has a life expectancy of 79.8 years,  This assumes that all of the advances in lifestyle and modern medicine remain static or improve.  But what happens if they don’t?  What happens if modern medicine, hospitals, and treatments cease to exist?  How long could the average person expect to live after a world altering event?

Guessing how long one might live in this scenario is a tough call.  We don’t know what could happen to change the lifestyle of the average person.  Is it war? Economic collapse?  An asteroid?  While we don’t know exactly what might happen to cause TEOTWAWKI, we can make a few assumptions.  Namely, that antibiotics disappear, hospitals and modern diagnosis equipment will be gone, and treatment options like heart surgery and cancer treatment are a thing of the past.  The last two are important to note, because heart disease and cancer are the two biggest killers in the western world today.  This wasn’t true before the twentieth century, infectious diseases like Influenza, Pneumonia, Tuberculosis, and Gastrointestinal diseases were the primary killer.  Heart disease was still present, but not as prevalent, and accidental deaths were twice as likely.   I’d imagine for a vast majority of us, living right now, the manner in which we die would return to these old world ways if an earth altering event happened tomorrow.

Yes, but how long will I live?  You might think that you could just look at records for life expectancy from years past.  Birth and death records have been kept for centuries, this type of information is available.  For you and I, this information is almost useless in calculating our life expectancy’s should a scenario play out.  Yes, we will be much more susceptible to disease and much more likely to succumb to those diseases, but we can’t rely on these figures from the past.  For instance, at the turn of the 20th century, the life expectancy at birth for just under 50.  In the US in the 19th Century, life expectancy’s were anywhere from the very late thirties to mid-forties.  The demographic numbers of people interested in surviving the apocalypse are getting interesting!

Women and Children First

Stan and Blanche play chess, long after they should have been dead if they'd listened to statistics.

Stan and Blanche play chess, long after they should have been dead if they’d listened to statistics.

That might be the worst pun in the history of puns.  As a person who is 35 years of age or older, you might feel as if you would have one foot in the grave already considering past life expectancy’s, but rest assured, it isn’t true.  Life expectancy tables are driven by statistics and as Mark Twain once said, ” There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics“.  The same is true in this case.  For you, the person who is already an adult, things are different.  You didn’t die as an infant or young child.  Infant mortality rates were insane before the last century.  It was a 50/50 shot as to whether a child would make it to adulthood.  While you might be concerned with your own longevity, I imagine pregnancy post apocalypse will be absolutely terrifying.  Not only will women have a much greater chance of dying during childbirth, those children will only have a coin flips shot at making it.  I truly sympathize with parents who have lost children, but knowing that half of them wouldn’t make it to adulthood might make me think twice about trying to have them in the first place.

So what is the answer?!

Since life expectancy rates are statistics, if you are halfway’s decent at math, you might begin to see the picture.  If two children are born, one passes before the age of one, and the other lives to 70, the life expectancy would be 35.5 years.  The truth of the matter is that people in previous centuries, on the whole, lived pretty long lives, that is, if they made it to adulthood.  While we might face a larger problem with infectious diseases after the apocalypse, there are plenty of things that will probably disappear, like obesity.  Obesity, and her ugly sisters, diabetes, cancer, and heart disease will again move down the ranks of things that kill people.  Obesity simply wouldn’t be possible.  The foods that we consume that cause cancer, wouldn’t be available.  The exercise that aren’t participating in, would be mandatory for survival.  All of these things will make life actually much more tolerable as we aged, until you get whacked by pneumonia at 75.  My supposition is that not only will you live to near the age you would have with modern medicine, your quality of life will be greatly improved, right up to the very end.  If right now you are a health adult, imagine how your body would react to an instant regimen of diet and exercise?

So fear not fellow preppers, if TEOTWAWKI were to happen today, chances are you would still live a long and fruitful life.  In fact, even in medieval times, folks lived on average to 70 years old after making it to adulthood.  Just like today, 80, 90, and even 100 aren’t out of reach.

Permanent link to this article: http://tinhatranch.com/long-will-live-teotwawki/