Psychological well-being and risk of dementia.

TitlePsychological well-being and risk of dementia.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsSutin, AR, Stephan, Y, Terracciano, A
JournalInternational Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry
Date Published05/2018
ISSN Number1099-1166
KeywordsAlzheimer's disease, Dementia, Depressive symptoms, Health Conditions and Status, Well-being

OBJECTIVE: Well-being is a psychological resource that buffers against age-related disease. We test whether this protective effect extends to dementia and whether it is independent of distress.

METHODS: Participants (N = 10,099) were from the Health and Retirement Study. Five aspects of positive psychological functioning (life satisfaction, optimism, mastery, purpose in life, and positive affect) were tested as predictors of incident dementia over 6 to 8 years.

RESULTS: Purpose in life was associated with a 30% decreased risk of dementia, independent of psychological distress, other clinical and behavioral risk factors, income/wealth, and genetic risk. After controlling for distress and other risk factors, the other aspects of well-being were not associated with dementia risk.

CONCLUSIONS: After considering psychological distress, we found that measures of well-being were generally not protective against risk of dementia. An exception is purpose in life, which suggests that a meaningful and goal-driven life reduces risk of dementia.

User Guide Notes

Alternate JournalInt J Geriatr Psychiatry
Citation Key9448
PubMed ID29314273
PubMed Central IDPMC5882524
Grant ListR01 AG053297 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States
R03 AG051960 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States