Economic Strain and Well-Being in Late Life: Findings from a 14-Year Population-Based, Longitudinal Study of Older Adults in Taiwan

Chi Chiao, National Yang Ming University
Li-Jen Weng, National Taiwan University
Amanda Botticello, Kessler Medical Rehabilitation Research and Education Corporation

Using data from the Taiwan Longitudinal Study on Aging, we estimated the effects of economic strain and economic resources such as income and homeownership on the well-being of older Taiwanese adults cross-sectionally and longitudinally. Measures of well-being include life satisfaction, psychological distress, and self rated health. Results from multivariate regression modeling with the estimates of generalized estimating equations show that older adults who experienced economic strain had poorer well-being in comparison to older adults without strain, both cross-sectionally and over time (p's < 0.01), even controlling for economic resource, socio-demographic characteristics, physical health, and survival status. By contrast, economic resources were not consistently associated with most measures of well-being in the cross-sectional and longitudinal analyses. These findings suggest a strong, negative, long-term effect of economic strain on well-being among older adults. Programmatic strategies aimed at promoting well-being among older adults could potentially benefit by including a component that addresses economic strain

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Presented in Session 193: The Dynamics of SES and Health