Personality Traits Predict the Onset of Disease

TitlePersonality Traits Predict the Onset of Disease
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsWeston, SJ, Hill, PL, Jackson, JJ
JournalSocial Psychological and Personality Science
Start Page309
KeywordsHealth Conditions and Status, Healthcare

While personality traits have been linked concurrently to health status and prospectively to outcomes such as mortality, it is currently unknown whether traits predict the diagnosis of a number of specific diseases (e.g., lung disease, heart disease, and stroke) that may account for their mortality effects more generally. A sample (N = 6,904) of participants from the Health and Retirement Study, a longitudinal study of older adults, completed personality measures and reported on current health conditions. Four years later, participants were followed up to see if they developed a new disease. Initial cross-sectional analyses replicated past findings that personality traits differ across disease groups. Longitudinal logistic regression analyses predicting new disease diagnosis suggest that traits are associated with the risk of developing disease most notably the traits of conscientiousness, neuroticism, and openness. Findings are discussed as a means to identify pathways between personality and health.

Endnote Keywords

personality/personality/health outcomes/disease groups/conscientiousness/conscientiousness/openness/neuroticism/personality traits

Endnote ID


Citation Key6481