TitleStability and change in older adults' social contact and social support: the Cardiovascular Health Study.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1999
AuthorsMartire, LM, Schulz, R, Mittelmark, MB, Newsom, JT
JournalJ Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci
Date Published1999 Sep
KeywordsAge Factors, Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Cross-Sectional Studies, Educational Status, Family, Female, Health Status, Humans, Interpersonal Relations, Linear Models, Longitudinal Studies, Male, Predictive Value of Tests, Sex Factors, Social Support, Socioeconomic Factors, Surveys and Questionnaires, Time Factors, United States

<p><b>OBJECTIVES: </b>The aim of this study was to examine the degree of individual change in structural indicators of social support (family network contact and close friend network contact) and functional indicators of social support (belonging, appraisal, and tangible support) during late life.</p><p><b>METHODS: </b>Using a large population-based sample of older adults, hierarchical linear modeling was applied to examine the extent of change in social contact and support as well as sociodemographic characteristics (age, race, gender, and education) that might explain individual variability in contact and support at baseline and over time.</p><p><b>RESULTS: </b>Consistent with predictions, small yet significant increases were observed in belonging support and tangible support. Contrary to predictions, no evidence was found for significant individual change in family network contact, close friend network contact, or appraisal support. Sociodemographic characteristics were more consistent predictors of variability in contact and support at baseline than variability over time.</p><p><b>DISCUSSION: </b>The findings of this study add to a growing literature suggesting that late life is not typically characterized by a decline in important social resources.</p>

Alternate JournalJ Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci
PubMed ID10542832
Grant ListR01 MH-46015 / MH / NIMH NIH HHS / United States
R01 MH-52247 / MH / NIMH NIH HHS / United States
T32 MH-19986 / MH / NIMH NIH HHS / United States