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Psychol Aging. 1989 Mar;4(1):88-97.

Satisfaction with social support and depressive symptoms: a panel analysis.

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School of Public Health, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor 48109-2029.


The literature suggests that persons who are dissatisfied with the amount of social support that has been provided to them may subsequently suffer from psychological disorder. At the same time, there is evidence that individuals who initially suffer from emotional disorder may consequently be less satisfied with their social support systems than may persons who enjoy better mental health. The purpose of this study was to test these competing hypotheses with panel data from a community survey of older adults. The findings indicate that changes in satisfaction with support tend to precede changes in depressive symptoms. A number of issues in the analysis of longitudinal data are discussed.

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