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Personality Change in the Oldest-Old: Is It a Matter of Compromised Health and Functioning?

Journal article
Authors Anne Ingeborg Berg
Boo Johansson
Published in Journal of personality
Volume 82
Issue 1
Pages 25-31
ISSN 1467-6494
Publication year 2014
Published at Department of Psychology
Pages 25-31
Language en
Subject categories Psychology


The present longitudinal study investigates continuity and change in the personality dimensions of extraversion and neuroticism among the oldest-old. Overall disease load, self-rated health, functional capacity, impaired vision and hearing, self-reported cognitive impairment, and measured cognitive status were tested for their role as potentially relevant late-life predictors of personality change. The sample consists of 408 individuals aged 80-98 in the Swedish OCTO-Twin Study who completed the Eysenck Personality Inventory at four measurement occasions during a 6-year period. Growth curve analyses revealed an age-related linear decrease in extraversion and stability in neuroticism. More extraverted individuals were more educated and perceived their health and cognition as better. Notably, only hearing impairment was found to be related to a steeper age-related decline in extraversion. A life span developmental model focusing on health-related changes can improve our understanding of personality change in late life.

Page Manager: Webmaster|Last update: 9/11/2012

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