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J Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci. 2011 May;66(3):287-91. doi: 10.1093/geronb/gbq105. Epub 2011 Feb 3.

Indicators of job strain at midlife and cognitive functioning in advanced old age.

Author information

1
School of Aging Studies MHC 1321, University of South Florida, 4202 E. Fowler Avenue, FL 33620, USA. randel@usf.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

We used data from SWEOLD, a Swedish nationally representative study of individuals aged 77 years or older, to examine midlife indicators of job strain in relation to cognitive performance and impairment.

METHODS:

In all, 827 participants completed an abridged 11-point version of the Mini-Mental State Examination in-person in 1992 and/or 2002 and had self-reported and/or occupation-based scores for job control and demands from data collected in 1968. Seventeen percent scored below the cutoff for cognitive impairment.

RESULTS:

Controlling for age, sex, education, self-rated health, and year of cognitive screening, low self-reported and occupation-based job control at midlife was associated with poorer cognitive performance later (ps < .001). For the occupation-based measure, low job control was also associated with greater likelihood of impairment, whereas having an active job (high job control/high job demands) was associated with better cognitive performance and lower likelihood of impairment (ps < .01). Childhood environment, midlife depressive symptoms, and social activity had limited influence, whereas the influence of both adulthood socioeconomic position and work complexity on these results was more pronounced.

DISCUSSION:

Job control at midlife, by itself and in combination with job demands, may influence cognitive functioning later above and beyond demographic variables and other occupational characteristics.

PMID:
21292810
DOI:
10.1093/geronb/gbq105
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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