Self-Made Success Stories and Dementia: Overcoming Adversity


A study shows that people who overcome difficult environments and become self-made have a lower risk of developing dementia. This is largely due to their strong stress resilience. Let’s delve into this secret.


1. Lower Dementia Risk Among Those Who Overcome Adversity

Researchers from Osaka University in Japan studied 9,000 elderly individuals and found that those who grew up in challenging environments have a lower risk of developing dementia. The study revealed that people who experienced socioeconomic hardships in childhood but improved their situation later in life had about a 30% lower risk of dementia compared to the middle class. This is attributed to the strong stress resilience developed by overcoming childhood difficulties.

2. The Importance of Continuous Problem Solving

Life is a continuous sequence of problem-solving. Particularly, elevating one’s economic status is extremely challenging, but the experiences gained from this process provide powerful energy. This stress resilience gained through such experiences plays a significant role in lowering the risk of dementia.

3. Positive Vitality from Hardships

Ironically, hardships and pain provide positive vitality to humans. Many people who were energetic while working often age rapidly once they retire, indicating the substantial vitality derived from work. While excessive labor should be avoided, overcoming appropriate challenges provides rewards beyond economic compensation.

4. Inherent Energy and Competitiveness

Some people possess high levels of inherent energy or competitiveness. These traits help them change their social status, which can also contribute to a lower risk of developing dementia.

Conclusion: Class Mobility in Modern Society

In medieval or modern times, changing one’s class was nearly impossible, but today, there are many opportunities to advance one’s level through effort. However, it seems that class barriers are becoming more rigid in contemporary society, reminiscent of medieval or modern times. Buying a house was challenging in the past and remains difficult today; will it become even harder in the future?

Nevertheless, those who overcome adversity possess strong stress resilience and vitality, reducing their risk of developing dementia. Their success secrets lie in continuous problem-solving and the experiences gained from overcoming hardships.

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