Providing Social Support may be More Beneficial than Receiving It: Results from a Prospective Study of Mortality

Stephanie L. Brown, Randolph Nesse, Amiram D. Vinokur, Dylan M. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

599 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study examines the relative contributions of giving versus receiving support to longevity in a sample of older married adults. Baseline indicators of giving and receiving support were used to predict mortality status over a 5-year period in the Changing Lives of Older Couples sample. Results from logistic regression analyses indicated that mortality was significantly reduced for individuals who reported providing instrumental support to friends, relatives, and neighbors, and individuals who reported providing emotional support to their spouse. Receiving support had no effect on mortality once giving support was taken into consideration. This pattern of findings was obtained after controlling for demographic, personality, health, mental health, and marital-relationship variables. These results have implications for understanding how social contact influences health and longevity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)320-327
Number of pages8
JournalPsychological Science
Volume14
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 2003
Externally publishedYes

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Social Support
Prospective Studies
Mortality
Health
Marriage
Spouses
Personality
Mental Health
Logistic Models
Regression Analysis
Demography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)

Cite this

Providing Social Support may be More Beneficial than Receiving It : Results from a Prospective Study of Mortality. / Brown, Stephanie L.; Nesse, Randolph; Vinokur, Amiram D.; Smith, Dylan M.

In: Psychological Science, Vol. 14, No. 4, 07.2003, p. 320-327.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Brown, Stephanie L. ; Nesse, Randolph ; Vinokur, Amiram D. ; Smith, Dylan M. / Providing Social Support may be More Beneficial than Receiving It : Results from a Prospective Study of Mortality. In: Psychological Science. 2003 ; Vol. 14, No. 4. pp. 320-327.
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