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Executive functioning independently predicts self-rated health and improvement in self-rated health over time among community-dwelling older adults

McHugh, Joanna E. and Lawlor, Brian A. (2015) Executive functioning independently predicts self-rated health and improvement in self-rated health over time among community-dwelling older adults. Aging & Mental Health. ISSN 1364-6915

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Abstract

Objectives: Self-rated health, as distinct from objective measures of health, is a clinically informative metric among older adults. The purpose of our study was to examine the cognitive and psychosocial factors associated with self-rated health.

Methods: 624 participants over the age of 60 were assessed at baseline, and of these, 510 were contacted for a follow-up two years later. Measures of executive function and self-rated health were assessed at baseline, and self-rated health was assessed at follow-up. We employed multiple linear regression analyses to investigate the relationship between executive functioning and self-rated health, while controlling for demographic, psychosocial and biological variables.

Results: Controlling for other relevant variables, executive functioning independently and solely predicted self-rated health, both at a cross-sectional level, and also over time. Loneliness was also found to cross-sectionally predict self-rated health, although this relationship was not present at a longitudinal level.

Conclusion: Older adults' self-rated health may be related to their executive functioning and to their loneliness. Self-rated health appeared to improve over time, and the extent of this improvement was also related to executive functioning at baseline. Self-rated health may be a judgement made of one's functioning, especially executive functioning, which changes with age and therefore may be particularly salient in the reflections of older adults.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > Psychology > Cognition
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare > Welfare of older people
Divisions: School of Business > Staff Research and Publications
Related URLs:
Depositing User: CAOIMHE NI MHAICIN
Date Deposited: 02 Oct 2015 10:58
Last Modified: 02 Oct 2015 10:58
URI: http://trap.ncirl.ie/id/eprint/1980

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