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The influence of psychosocial working conditions on late-life physical functioning
Aging Research Center, Stockholm University, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden.
Aging Research Center, Stockholm University, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden.
Jönköping University, School of Health and Welfare, HHJ, Institute of Gerontology. Jönköping University, School of Health and Welfare, HHJ. ARN-J (Aging Research Network - Jönköping). Aging Research Center, Stockholm University, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-8617-0355
International Clinical Research Center, University of South Florida, Tampa, United States.
2018 (English)In: Revue d'épidémiologie et de santé publique, ISSN 0398-7620, E-ISSN 1773-0627, Vol. 66, no Suppl. 5, p. S279-S279Article in journal, Meeting abstract (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background

In older adults, increasing age correlates with declining physical functioning. The growing demographic challenge posed by an aging population makes finding predictors of physical functioning in old age increasingly important. Work dominates much of our adult lives, which makes it likely that the workplace is important to health and aging. Stressful working conditions have been associated with limitations in physical functioning in old age. Active jobs (high psychological demands, high control) are considered to increase learning, which may reduce the perception of situations as stressful and instead be viewed as challenges and opportunities for personal growth. This will, in turn, lead to feelings of self-efficacy that may encourage an active leisure-time, such as physical activity. We investigated the long-term association between active jobs and mobility in old age.

Method

Two individually linked Swedish surveys were used (n=775). A psychosocial job-exposure matrix was used to measure active jobs four times in midlife (age 40–65). Mobility was measured in 2014 as the self-reported ability to stand without support, walk up and down stairs, walk 100 meters fairly briskly, rise from a chair with arms crossed across the chest, and ability to balance indoors, summarized in a 5-item index (0–5). Data were analyzed with ordered logistic regressions.

Results

Having an active job was associated with significantly better mobility in old age compared to people in non-active jobs. However, the accumulated score of active jobs over working life were not more strongly associated with mobility in old age than the score of active job in 1991, which may indicate that the conditions of a person's most recent job mattered the most.

Conclusions

Active job conditions in midlife are important predictors of mobility in old age. Promoting active job conditions may be used to improve midlife interventions aimed at preventing physical deterioration later in life.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2018. Vol. 66, no Suppl. 5, p. S279-S279
National Category
Gerontology, specialising in Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-42748DOI: 10.1016/j.respe.2018.05.111OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hj-42748DiVA, id: diva2:1282171
Conference
European Congress of Epidemiology “Crises, epidemiological transitions and the role of epidemiologists”, July 4-6, 2018, Lyon, France
Available from: 2019-01-24 Created: 2019-01-24 Last updated: 2019-01-24Bibliographically approved

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Kåreholt, Ingemar

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