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Social engagement in late life may attenuate the burden of depressive symptoms due to financial strain in childhood
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Aging Research Center (ARC), (together with KI). University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Italy.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Aging Research Center (ARC), (together with KI).
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Aging Research Center (ARC), (together with KI). Fondazione Policlinico Universitario “A. Gemelli” IRCCS, Italy; Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Italy.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Aging Research Center (ARC), (together with KI).
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Number of Authors: 72020 (English)In: Journal of Affective Disorders, ISSN 0165-0327, E-ISSN 1573-2517, Vol. 263, p. 336-343Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: It remains poorly understood if childhood financial strain is associated with old-age depression and if active social life may mitigate this relationship.

Aims: To investigate the association between childhood financial strain and depressive symptoms during aging; to examine whether late-life social engagement modifies this association.

Method: 2884 dementia-free individuals (aged 60 + ) from the Swedish National study of Aging and CareKungsholmen were clinically examined over a 15-year follow-up. Presence of childhood financial strain was ascertained at baseline. Depressive symptoms were repeatedly assessed with the Montgomery-angstrom sberg Depression Rating Scale. Social engagement comprised information on baseline social network and leisure activities. Linear, logistic and mixed-effect models estimated baseline and longitudinal associations accounting for sociodemographic, clinical, and lifestyle factors.

Results: Childhood financial strain was independently associated with a higher baseline level of depressive symptoms (beta = 0.37, 95%CI 0.10-0.65), but not with symptom change over time. Relative to those without financial strain and with active social engagement, depressive burden was increased in those without financial strain but with inactive social engagement (beta = 0.43, 95%CI: 0.15-0.71), and in those with both financial strain and inactive engagement (beta = 0.99, 95%CI: 0.59-1.40). Individuals with financial strain and active social engagement exhibited similar depressive burden as those without financial strain and with active social engagement.

Limitations: Recall bias and reverse causality may affect study results, although sensitivity analyses suggest their limited effect.

Conclusions: Early-life financial strain may be of lasting importance for old-age depressive symptoms. Active social engagement in late-life may mitigate this association.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2020. Vol. 263, p. 336-343
Keywords [en]
Aging, Late-life depression, Childhood socioeconomic status, Social network, Leisure activities, Resilience
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-179492DOI: 10.1016/j.jad.2019.11.163ISI: 000508874400044PubMedID: 31969263OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-179492DiVA, id: diva2:1413475
Available from: 2020-03-10 Created: 2020-03-10 Last updated: 2020-03-10Bibliographically approved

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