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Dement Geriatr Cogn Disord. 2019 Sep 11:1-6. doi: 10.1159/000501822. [Epub ahead of print]

Cognitive Reserve Mediates the Relation between Openness to Experience and Smaller Decline in Executive Functioning.

Ihle A1,2,3, Zuber S4,5,6, Gouveia ÉR5,7,8, Gouveia BR5,8,9,10, Mella N4,5,11, Desrichard O6,11, Cullati S5,6,12, Oris M5,6, Maurer J6,13, Kliegel M4,5,6.

Author information

1
Department of Psychology, University of Geneva, Geneva, Switzerland, Andreas.Ihle@unige.ch.
2
Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Gerontology and Vulnerability, University of Geneva, Geneva, Switzerland, Andreas.Ihle@unige.ch.
3
Swiss National Centre of Competence in Research LIVES - Overcoming Vulnerability: Life Course Perspectives, Lausanne and Geneva, Switzerland, Andreas.Ihle@unige.ch.
4
Department of Psychology, University of Geneva, Geneva, Switzerland.
5
Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Gerontology and Vulnerability, University of Geneva, Geneva, Switzerland.
6
Swiss National Centre of Competence in Research LIVES - Overcoming Vulnerability: Life Course Perspectives, Lausanne and Geneva, Switzerland.
7
Department of Physical Education and Sport, University of Madeira, Funchal, Portugal.
8
LARSYS, Interactive Technologies Institute, Funchal, Portugal.
9
Health Administration Institute, Secretary of Health of the Autonomous Region of Madeira, Funchal, Portugal.
10
Saint Joseph of Cluny Higher School of Nursing, Funchal, Portugal.
11
Groupe de Recherche en Psychologie de la Santé, University of Geneva, Geneva, Switzerland.
12
Institute of Sociological Research, University of Geneva, Geneva, Switzerland.
13
Department of Economics, University of Lausanne, Lausanne, Switzerland.

Abstract

AIMS:

We investigated the mediating role of leisure activity engagement in the longitudinal relation between openness to experience and subsequent change in executive functioning over 6 years as measured through performance changes in the Trail Making Test (TMT).

METHODS:

We analyzed longitudinal data from 897 older adults (mean = 74.33 years in the first wave) tested on TMT parts A and B in two waves 6 years apart. Participants reported information on leisure activity engagement and openness to experience.

RESULTS:

Latent change score modeling revealed that 37.2% of the longitudinal relation between higher openness to experience in the first wave of data collection and a smaller subsequent increase in TMT completion time from the first to the second wave (i.e., a smaller decline in executive functioning) was mediated via a higher frequency of leisure activities in the first wave.

CONCLUSION:

Individuals with higher openness to experience show greater activity engagement in old age. By enhancing their cognitive reserve, this activity engagement may finally result in smaller subsequent decline in executive functioning.

KEYWORDS:

Cognitive reserve; Decline in executive functioning; Leisure activities; Longitudinal study; Openness to experience

PMID:
31509829
DOI:
10.1159/000501822

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