Health-related quality of life and health behaviors by social and emotional support
- 1.4k Downloads
Social and emotional support is an important construct, which has been associated with a reduced risk of mental illness, physical illness, and mortality. Despite its apparent relevance to health, there have been no recent state or national population-based U.S. studies regarding social and emotional support. In order to better address this issue, we examined health-related quality of life (HRQOL) and health behaviors by level of social and emotional support in community-dwelling adults in the United States and its territories.
Data were obtained from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, an ongoing, state-based, random digit telephone survey of the noninstitutionalized U.S. population aged ≥18 years. In 2005, one social and emotional support question, four HRQOL questions, two disability questions, one life satisfaction question, and four health behavior questions were administered in the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. An additional five HRQOL questions were administered in two states.
An estimated 8.6% of adults reported that they rarely/never received social and emotional support; ranging in value from 4.2% in Minnesota to 12.4% in the U.S. Virgin Islands. As the level of social and emotional support decreased, the prevalence of fair/poor general health, dissatisfaction with life, and disability increased, as did the mean number of days of physical distress, mental distress, activity limitation, depressive symptoms, anxiety symptoms, insufficient sleep, and pain. Moreover, the prevalence of smoking, obesity, physical inactivity, and heavy drinking increased with decreasing level of social and emotional support. Additionally, the mean number of days of vitality slightly decreased with decreasing level of social and emotional support; particularly between those who always/usually received social and emotional support and those who sometimes received support.
These findings indicate that the assessment of social and emotional support is highly congruent with the practice of psychiatry. Assessment of social and emotional support, both in psychiatric and medical settings, may identify risk factors germane to adverse health behaviors, and foster interventions designed to improve the mental and physical health of at risk segments of the population.
Key wordssocial and emotional support health behaviors health-related quality of life disability surveillance
We gratefully acknowledge Rosemarie Kobau, MPH, for providing helpful comments on a previous version of this manuscript.
- 11.Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2005) Behavioral risk factor surveillance system user’s guide. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Atlanta. Available at:ftp://ftp.cdc.gov/pub/Data/Brfss/userguide.pdf
- 20.Heaney CA, Israel BA (1997) Chapter 9. Social networks and social support. In: Glanz K, Lewis FM, Rimer BK (eds) Health behavior and health education: theory, research and practice, 2nd edn. Jossey-Bass Publishers, San Francisco, pp 179–205Google Scholar
- 23.Holzman D (2004) The behavioral risk factor surveillance system. In: Blumenthal DS (ed) Community-based health research issues and methods. Springer, New York, pp 115–131Google Scholar
- 30.Keyes CL, Michalec B, Kobau R, Zahran H, Zack MM, Simoes EJ (2005) Social support and health-related quality of life among older adults—Missouri, 2000. MMWR 54(17):433–436Google Scholar
- 31.Kirksey KM, Hamilton MJ, Holt-Ashley M (2003) Correlates of perceived health in women diagnosed with HIV disease. Internet J Adv Nurs Pract 5(2)Google Scholar
- 40.Mielenz T, Jackson E, Currey S, DeVellis R, Callahan LF (2006) Psychometric properties of the centers for disease control and prevention health-related quality of life (CDC HRQOL) items in adults with arthritis. H Qual Life Outcomes 4:66 doi:10.1186/1477-7525-4-66[Provisional]. Available at: http://www.hqlo.com/content/4/1/66
- 59.Stroebe W (2000) Moderators of the stress–health relationship. In: Manstead T (ed) Social psychology and health. Open University Press, Buckingham, England, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, pp 244–254Google Scholar
- 60.Tierney JP, Grossman JB, Resch NL (2000) Making a difference: an impact study of big brothers big sisters. Available at:http://www.ppv.org/ppv/publications/assets/111_publication.pdf
- 63.U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration on Aging (2003) Older Americans act: a layman’s guide. Available at: http://www.co.pierce.wa.us/xml/abtus/ourorg/humsvcs/altc/pierceseniorinfoolderamericansactguide.pdf
- 64.U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2005. Available at: http://www.health.gov/dietaryguidelines/dga2005/document/pdf/Chapter9.pdf
- 70.Wortman CB, Conway TL (1985) The role of social support in adaptation and recovery from physical illness. In: Cohen S (ed) Social support and health. Academy Press, San Diego, pp 281–302Google Scholar
- 71.Yen CF, Kuo CY, Tsai PT, Ko CH, Yen JY, Chen TT (2006) Correlations of quality of life with adverse effects of medication, social support, course of illness, psychopathology, and demographic characteristics in patients with panic disorder. Depress Anxiety (ahead of print)Google Scholar