PMID: 7992492Oct 1, 1994Paper

The self, health, and depression in elderly women

Western Journal of Nursing Research
Susan M Heidrich


A short-term, longitudinal, survey study was conducted to examine relationships among actual and ideal self conceptions, physical health, and depression in 149 community-dwelling elderly women. Two theoretical perspectives regarding the self were compared, women's self-development and lifespan developmental theory. As predicted by theories of women's development, relationships with other emerged as a salient aspect of the self in elderly women. Regression analyses indicated that actual and ideal self-conceptions were predicted by depression, but not generally by physical health status. Thus, physical health problems were not global in their effects on the various dimensions of the self in elderly women, but depression was.


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