Stability and Change of Valuation of Life in Old Age

[Speaker] Nakagawa, Takeshi:1
[Co-author] Gondo, Yasuyuki:1, Masui, Yukie:2, Ishioka, Yoshiko:3, Ogawa, Madoka:4, Inagaki, Hiroki:2, Tabuchi, Megumi:5, Kozono, Marina:1, Yasumoto, Saori:1, Numata, Keitaro:1, Kurinobu, Takeshi:2, Tsai, Ujyun:1, Goto, Fumika:1, Takayama, Midori:3, Ikebe, Kazunori:1, Kamide, Kei:1, Arai, Yasumichi:3, Ishizaki, Tatsuro:2, Takahashi, Ryutaro:2
1:Osaka University (Japan), 2:Tokyo Metropolitan Institute of Gerontology (Japan), 3:Keio University (Japan), 4:Hokkaido University (Japan), 5:Kwansei Gakuin University (Japan)

Valuation of life (VOL) represents a well-being dimension defined as active attachment to life. This study investigated cross-sectional age differences and longitudinal age changes of VOL in old age. A cross-sectional sample comprised 2,245 adults from three cohorts, aged 69-71, 79-81, and 89-91 years, and the longitudinal data included two examinations at a three-year interval. Cross-sectional and longitudinal analyses showed that the mean levels of VOL remained stable, even in very old age. Personality traits, especially conscientiousness, explained large proportions of variance in mean levels of VOL. Age-related declines, such as in health and cognition, accounted for small proportions of variance in interindividual differences in VOL change. These findings indicate that VOL is a trait construct rather than a transitory disposition. Selection and survivor biases might underestimate associations between age-related decline and VOL. Future studies involving longer follow-up periods could reveal the dynamics of stability and change of VOL.
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