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Social Support

Conceptualizing Social Support And Social Integration, Benefits Of Social Support And Social Integration, Differentials In Social Support And Social Integration

Research on social support and social relationships among older adults—and their correlates and consequences—is voluminous and growing. The beneficial effect of social support on individual well-being is one of the most consistent findings in this literature. In summarizing the importance of social relations to successful aging, John W. Rowe and Robert L. Kahn (1998) drew four conclusions:

  • • A lack of social ties is a risk factor for poor health
  • • Social support in various forms can have direct positive effects on health
  • • Receipt of social support can buffer some of the negative effects of health declines associated with aging
  • • The type of social support found to be effective varies by individual needs and situations

Additional topics

Medicine EncyclopediaAging Healthy - Part 4