How do objective and subjective assessments of neighbourhood influence social and physical functioning in older age? Findings from a British survey of ageing

Bowling, Ann and Stafford, Mai (2007) How do objective and subjective assessments of neighbourhood influence social and physical functioning in older age? Findings from a British survey of ageing. Social Science & Medicine, 64(12), pp. 2533-2549. ISSN (print) 0277-9536

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Abstract

The objective was to investigate associations between type of area, individuals? perceptions of their neighbourhoods, and indicators of social and physical functioning. Social functioning was measured using numbers of social activities and frequency of social contacts in the past month. Physical functioning was measured with Townsend's Activities of Daily Living scale. The study was a British cross-sectional population survey of people aged 65 plus living at home. Multilevel analyses indicated that respondents who lived in affluent areas were less likely to have low levels of social activity independently of individual demographic and socio-economic characteristics. Individuals? perceptions of the area as neighbourly and having good facilities were also independently associated with lower likelihood of low social activities. Affluence of the area and perceived neighbourhood were associated with physical functioning, although these associations disappeared once adjustment was made for individuals? characteristics. Both objective and more subjective measures of the neighbourhood independently contributed to our understanding of the determinants of social and physical functioning in older age. The unique value of this paper is its inclusion of the influence of perceived neighbourhood on the social and physical functioning of an older population, which are key components of active ageing.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: social capital, neighbourhood, social health, physical functioning, UK
Research Area: Allied health professions and studies
Health services research
Faculty, School or Research Centre: Faculty of Health and Social Care Sciences (until 2013)
Depositing User: Susan Miles
Date Deposited: 17 Nov 2010 12:18
Last Modified: 17 Nov 2010 12:18
URI: http://eprints.kingston.ac.uk/id/eprint/17220

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