Japan's fertility crisis is turning into a 'demographic time bomb' - here's how it affects daily life

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Issei Kato/Reuters

If you're of working age in Japan, daily life can mean 12- to 16-hour days punctuated by hurried meals and bookended by too little sleep.

If you're elderly, it can mean crushing loneliness.

But no matter your age in Japan, chances are good that some aspect of the country's ongoing fertility crisis has touched your life.Advertisement

Over the last five years, a vicious cycle of low fertility and low consumer spending has led to trillions in lost GDP and a population decline of 1 million people. Economists have a bleak term for this: demographic time bomb.

These time bombs can take years, sometimes decades to form, and perhaps even longer to defuse. Here's a taste of what Japan's looks like, as it stands today.