Commenced in January 2007
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Edition: International
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Relationship between Ageism, Health and Social Conditions: A Cross-Sectional Study Among Brazilian Older Adults

Authors: Ana Luiza Blanco, Luiza de Pádua Penteado, Daniella Pires Nunes


Ageism is a widespread and prevalent phenomenon that affects older adults and directly affects healthy aging. Identifying the factors that contribute to ageism is important to discuss interventions that minimizes its social and emotional impact. To identify factors related with ageism in Brazilians older adults. Quantitative study, with a cross-sectional and analytical design. 134 older adults completed an online questionnaire about Sociodemographic and Health Characteristics, Discrimination (Ageism Survey), Depressive Symptoms (The Geriatric Depression Scale), Family Function (Family APGAR) and Loneliness. The Mann Whitney and Kruskal Wallis tests were used for data analysis, with a significance level of 5%. The mean age was 66.93 years (sd=0.50), mostly women (84.20%), married (52.60%) and with more than 12 years of schooling (75.93%). The results showed that older adults with a regular self-perception of health had higher median ageism scores when compared to individuals who rated their health as very good or good (p=0.006). The same occurred for individuals with depressive symptoms when compared to those without signs of depression (p=0.001). Regarding family function, it was observed that people with low family functionality tend to suffer more ageism than those with high functionality (p=0.017). Loneliness was also a factor related with the experience of ageism in this study. Lonely individuals had higher median ageism scores (p=0.002). There was relationship between ageism and self-perception of health, depressive symptoms, loneliness and dysfunctional family. Such findings demonstrate the importance of considering the psychosocial determinants of aging to reduce discrimination and promote healthy aging, focusing on social support and educational interventions.

Keywords: ageism, age stereotypes, healthy aging, social conditions

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