Social contact, socioeconomic status, and the health status of older Malaysians

Z. Helen Wu, Laura Rudkin-Miniot

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

35 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We tested the applicability of the stress buffering hypothesis in a developing country setting with data from the Senior Sample of the Malaysian Family Life Survey-2. Using ordered logistic regression methods, we examined whether having daily contact with adult children moderates the effect of low socioeconomic status (SES; conceptualized as a chronic stressor) on self- assessed health status. We found that low SES is associated with poorer health for all three ethnic groups - Malay, Chinese, and Indian. Further, for Malays and Chinese, we found that the negative effects of low SES on health tend to be stronger for older people with less frequent contact with adult children than for those who have daily contact. These results provide general support for the buffering model and suggest that, as found in developed countries, active intergenerational relationships in developing country settings may have protective effects on the health of older people experiencing chronic stressors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)228-234
Number of pages7
JournalGerontologist
Volume40
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2000

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Social Class
Health Status
Adult Children
Developing Countries
Health
Ethnic Groups
Developed Countries
Logistic Models

Keywords

  • Chronic stressor
  • Intergenerational relations
  • Social support

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aging

Cite this

Social contact, socioeconomic status, and the health status of older Malaysians. / Wu, Z. Helen; Rudkin-Miniot, Laura.

In: Gerontologist, Vol. 40, No. 2, 2000, p. 228-234.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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