Personality And Self-Rated Health Across Eight Cohort Studies

TitlePersonality And Self-Rated Health Across Eight Cohort Studies
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of PublicationForthcoming
AuthorsStephan, Y, Sutin, AR, Luchetti, M, Hognon, L, Canada, B, Terracciano, A
JournalSocial Science & Medicine
ISBN Number0277-9536
KeywordsAdulthood, longitudinal, Personality, Self-rated health
Abstract

Rationale There is substantial evidence for the predictive value of single-item selfrated health measures for a range of health outcomes. Past research has found an association between personality traits and self-rated health. However, there has not been a multi-cohort large-scale study that has examined this link, and few studies have examined the association between personality and change in self-rated health. Objective To examine the concurrent and longitudinal association between personality and self-rated health.MethodParticipants were individuals aged from 16 to 107 years (N> 46,000) drawn from eight large longitudinal samples from the US, Europe, and Japan. Brief measures of the five-factor model of personality, a single item measure of self-rated health, and covariates (age, sex, and education, and race) were assessed at baseline and self-rated health was measured again 3 to 20 years later. Results In cross-sectional analyses, higher neuroticism was related to lower self-rated health whereas higher extraversion, openness, agreeableness and conscientiousness were associated with better self-rated health across most samples. A meta-analysis revealed that a one standard deviation higher neuroticism was related to more than 50% higher risk of fair to poor health, whereas a one standard deviation higher extraversion, openness, agreeableness and conscientiousness was associated with at least 15% lower risk of fair or poor health. A similar pattern was found in longitudinal analyses: personality was associated with risk of self-rated excellent/very good/good health at baseline becoming fair/poor at follow-up. In multilevel analyses, however, personality was weakly related to trajectories of self-rated health and in the opposite of the expected direction. Conclusions The present study shows replicable cross-sectional and small longitudinal associations between personality and self-rated health. This study suggests that lower neuroticism, higher extraversion, openness, agreeableness and conscientiousness are related to more favorable self-evaluations of health.

DOI10.1016/j.socscimed.2020.113245
Citation Key10950