Personality traits and subjective health in the later years: The association between NEO-PI-R and SF-36 in advanced age is influenced by health status

Corinna E. Löckenhoff, Angelina R. Sutin, Luigi Ferrucci, Paul T. Costa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This study examined the association between personality traits (as measured by the NEO-PI-R) and subjective ratings of mental and physical health (as measured by the SF-36) in two samples of older adults differing in health status (Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging, BLSA, n = 393, vs. Medicare Primary and Consumer-Directed Care Demonstration, Medicare PCC, n = 648). The association between personality traits and subjective mental health did not differ significantly across samples. The association between personality and subjective physical health, however, was significantly stronger in the healthy BLSA sample than in the medically challenged Medicare PCC sample. Differences in health conditions and recent hospitalizations partially accounted for this effect. Lifespan developmental considerations and implications for the use of subjective health ratings as outcome measures in clinical studies are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1334-1346
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Research in Personality
Volume42
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 2008
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Aging
  • Five-Factor Model
  • NEO-PI-R
  • Older adults
  • Personality
  • SF-36
  • Self-rated health
  • Subjective health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Psychology(all)

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