Men aged 65 think that they will live for 2.3 years longer than current life expectancy for a 65-year-old while 32% of women aged 65 think they will reach 90 - four years longer than current life expectancy for their age.
Sun Life, which runs a death clock to help assess life expectancy, says research from The Health Foundation and its own findings suggest improvements in life expectancy have “stalled” for the first time in 120 years.
Sun Life says despite this stalling of improvements in longevity most people expect to live longer than their realistic life expectancy.
According to the ONS, life expectancy at birth is 79.3 for men and 82.9 for women while men who are 65 can expect to live until they’re 83.6 and women who are 65 until they’re 86.
SunLife says it interviewed thousands of people in their 50s, 60s and 70s and found that most expect to live longer than average.
It found that most men over 50 think they will live to 83.8 and three in four expect to live until at least 80. Almost one in three believe they will notch up 90 years while around one in ten think they will hit a century.
Women over 50 think they will live to 84 on average and four out of five think they will reach at least 80. Almost a third (32%) think they will reach 90 but fewer think they will reach 100 than men – 7.2%.
For those who are already 65, men think they will live another 20.9 years – over two years longer than the ONS life expectancy says they will (18.6) - while women think they have another 21.4 years to live on average – five months more than the average life expectancy for a 65-year-old woman (21).
Ian Atkinson, marketing director at SunLife said: “Our research shows that while life expectancy overall may no longer be improving, many people in their 50s, 60s and 70s think they will live longer than the average life expectancy in the UK average, with almost a third believing they’ll reach 90.
“This could be because most people over 50 are living healthier lives now than when they were younger. According to our research, 87% of people over 50 have made changes to try and live healthier lives since turning 50; 60% are eating more healthily, almost half (46%) exercise more and 21% have cut back on how much they drink.”