Aging and perceived health status

Academic Article


  • Using a probability sample of 660 adults in Illinois, this study focuses on the relationship between age and perceived health status. According to age stratification theory, age groups need to be analyzed as age-specific entities that exist in relation to other sets of age groups. Following this perspective these data examine differences across the spectrum of adult age groups in this sample in regard to self-assessments of health. Number of symptoms was the strongest predictor of perceived health status employed in this analysis, followed by age, education, and race. It was found that those persons belonging to age groups over the age of 60 tend to perceive their own health in a significantly more positive fashion than members of younger adult age groups. The more educated elderly persons and those with the fewest symptoms, however, were most likely to hold this perception. One important area in which people appear to adjust their perception in later life is in their evaluation of personal health status.
  • Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Cockerham WC; Sharp K; Wilcox JA
  • Start Page

  • 349
  • End Page

  • 355
  • Volume

  • 38
  • Issue

  • 3