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Neurotic People Tend to Die Prematurely

Calling All Neurotics! Another Thing to Worry About

As a self-described neurotic, news that my neurosis may lead me to an early grave did not surprise me in the least. Unlike many neurotics who may read this story, however, I will not be adding "fear of premature death" to my list of things I like to worry about. There are too many things there as it is!

So who, exactly, is neurotic? Anyone who is constantly worried, anxious, or prone to depression, according to these researchers. (According to Freud? Neurotics are the normal people, if by "normal" you mean average!) But it’s not anxiety or depression that will necessarily do them in — it’s that they tend to drink and smoke more than “normal” folks do — with smoking being the worst thing they can do to themselves. (25 to 40 percent of the link between being neurotic and an early death was related to smoking — not drinking.)

Participants were asked questions like "Do you usually worry a long time after a distressing incident?” and "Are you sometimes sad without any particular reason?" to determine how neurotic they were.


Neurosis, I think, gives people an interesting edge, so as long as they cut down on the boozing and the cigarettes — worry away! I'm kidding. Kind of.


Join The Conversation
Janine22 Janine22 7 years
Personally, I find this study very weird. Women, in general suffer more anxiety and depression than men do. It is a 2:1 rate. Does this mean that more women than men smoke/drink and are therefore more likely to die younger? I seriously doubt it. This study really makes no sense when you consider that women live longer than men. Oh, ok I just read the article and the whole study has been conducted ONLY on men. It really irritates me when researchers study only men and assume that the results generalize to women!!!
a-million-suns a-million-suns 7 years
Um, I have no idea what happened there? When are we going to be able to delete and/or edit comments? Here it is again: Totally neurotic. But no excessive drinking or smoking, so there's good news.
a-million-suns a-million-suns 7 years
<--- Totally neurotic. But no excessive drinking or smoking, so there's good news.
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 7 years
I have neurotic tendencies. But I have made a conscious effort to dial it back because it can get unhealthy. I can worry myself sick. Literally. I think this one of the reasons why husband and I are good match. He's very laid-back, calm, cool, and collected. He reins me in when I over worry. :)
juicebox07 juicebox07 7 years
I am like #1. I'm definitely neurotic, but I don't smoke and very rarely drink. I used to smoke, however, but I quit because I know how gross, expensive, and unhealthy it is. I rarely drink because it almost always upsets my stomach even if I don't drink much.
Chrstne Chrstne 7 years
I am not neurotic at all. We all have bouts of anxiety, but other than that, I am chill all the time. I don't worry. I do drink, and have never smoked. So I think I am okay. Maybe what can really do neurotics in is if they have a higher pulse or something. I know people with a high pulse generally don't live as long as someone who has a heart rate of 60 beats per minute. If they are always anxious and worrying, I can see how that would be plausible.
lilkimbo lilkimbo 7 years
I'm definitely neurotic! I don't smoke and I don't drink much, though, so I think I'll be OK.
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