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What matters, and what matters most, for change in life satisfaction in the oldest-old? A study over 6 years among individuals 80+.

Journal article
Authors Anne Ingeborg Berg
Lesa Hoffman
Linda Hassing
Gerald E McClearn
Boo Johansson
Published in Aging & mental health
Volume 13
Issue 2
Pages 191-201
ISSN 1364-6915
Publication year 2009
Published at Department of Psychology
Pages 191-201
Language en
Keywords Aged, 80 and over, Aging, psychology, Cross-Sectional Studies, Depression, epidemiology, physiopathology, Female, Health Status, Humans, Internal-External Control, Longitudinal Studies, Male, Models, Theoretical, Personal Satisfaction, Personality, Social Support, Sweden, epidemiology, Widowhood
Subject categories Psychology


OBJECTIVES: The study investigates whether markers of life satisfaction identified in a cross-sectional study-quality of social network, self-rated health, depressive symptoms, locus of control and widowhood, in addition to financial satisfaction and the personality traits of extraversion and neuroticism-predict change in life satisfaction (LSI-Z) across four measurement occasions during a 6-year period in individuals aged 80+. METHOD: Data were drawn from the Swedish OCTO-Twin-study of individuals aged 80 and older. RESULTS: Growth curve analysis showed a relatively consistent significant linear decline in life satisfaction, but certain markers predicted change in life satisfaction. The loss of spouse, in particular in men, and higher levels of depressive symptoms were related to lower levels of life satisfaction over time. CONCLUSION: The results from the study question the notion of a life-long stability of life satisfaction.

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