Sedentary lifestyles leads to more younger people contracting ‘old-age’ conditions


People in their 20s and 30s are being treated for knee joint problems, varicose veins,  and other conditions normally associated with old age.

“when you consider the amount of time young people now spend sat using their mobiles and tablets, streaming box sets or playing with the latest games console, you can see why these conditions are rising in this age group. (Bupa Medical Director)”

Bad postures and irregular physical activity have led to a rise in the number of younger people experiencing complaints such as back pain and haemorrhoids, according to analysis by Bupa.


It found treatment traditionally offered to older generations was increasingly being sought by younger people, aged mainly between 25 and 45 – a shift it attributed to time spent sitting at desks, watching box sets and using smartphones and tablets.

Removal of haemorrhoids and varicose veins were two of the most common procedures in the heart and circulatory diseases category for both 26 to 35-year-olds and 36 to 45-year-olds.


Varicose veins are a problem commonly associated with old age. Among the five most common procedures for 36 to 45-year-olds were arthroscopic knee operations, a surgical technique by which a tiny camera is used to look inside the knee.

Epidural injections at the base of the spine, used to treat back pain, was also in the top five for this age group – a 10 per cent rise from 2014, a Bupa spokesperson told The Independent.

And arthroscopic knee operations were even one of the five most common procedures among 16 to 25-year-olds.

Searches for stress-related conditions on Bupa’s website had also increased, it said, suggesting this could be due to longer working hours, busy schedules and a lack of ability to “switch off”.

According to a survey by the British Chiropractic Association (BCA), among 16 to 24-year-olds, 45 per cent said they were currently living with neck or back pain compared to 28 per cent of 18 to 24-year-olds asked the previous year.