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J Anxiety Disord. 2003;17(5):547-60.

Worry and use of coping strategies among older and younger adults.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Massachusetts at Amherst, Tobin Hall, Amherst, MA 01003, USA.


Eighty four adults over age 64 were compared with 110 college students on two measures of worry and on their methods of coping with worry. Results indicated that there were no differences in overall worry between the two groups, as measured by the Worry Scale for Older Adults--Revised, but on the individual subscales of health, family concerns, and world issues older adults expressed significantly more worries than younger adults. On the Penn State Worry Questionnaire, which measures a general, trait-like tendency to worry, younger adults reported significantly more worry than did the older adults. Younger adults also utilized a greater number of coping strategies in an effort to control worry. These results support the notion that older adults report relatively low levels of worrying when compared with the younger population. Explanations for these differences are discussed along with implications for the function of worry across the life span.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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