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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 54  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 51-56

Gender differences in quality of life and subjective happiness in Indian Elderly: A cross-sectional survey

1 National Institute for Locomotor Disabilities-Regional Centre, SCERT Campus, Aizawl, Mizoram, India
2 Department of Occupational Therapy, Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences, New Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
Sarju Moirangthem
National Institute for Locomotor Disabilities-Regional Centre, SCERT Campus, Chaltlang, Aizawl - 796 012, Mizoram
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijoth.ijoth_32_21

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Background: As aging is associated with lower quality of life (QOL), it is important to determine overall QOL and its related factors among older adults. Studies have shown that gender plays an essential role in the perception of health across cultures. As very few studies has been conducted on gender disparity in the elderly in India. Thus, the study was conducted to assess the differences in QOL and subjective happiness between male and female community-dwelling elderly. Objectives: The study was conducted to assess the differences in QOL and subjective happiness between male and female community-dwelling elderly in India. Study Design: The study design involves a cross-sectional survey. Methods: The data were collected from community-dwelling elderly (>60 years of age) based on convenient sampling. QOL and subjective happiness were tested by World Health Organization QOL (WHOQOL)-BREF and the Subjective Happiness Questionnaire. Informed consent was taken before administering the study-specific questionnaire via mail, telephone, or in person. Only completed questionnaires were used. Data hence collected were analyzed. Results: The data were analyzed by descriptive analysis, whereas the differences between gender on QOL and happiness were computed using the t-test and Mann–Whitney test, respectively. Gender and educational qualification correlated with QOL measure WHOQOL (P = 0.05; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.014, 0.527). Furthermore, a positive correlation (P = 0.01; 95% CI: 0.994, 0.998) was found between WHOQOL-BREF and the Subjective Happiness Questionnaire. For the overall QOL and general health section in WHOQOL-BREF, males scored a mean ± standard deviation (SD) of 3.825 ± 0.71 and 3.275 ± 1.15, whereas females scored a mean ± SD of 3.875 ± 0.56 and 3.35 ± 1.21. For the four domains of WHOQOL-BREF except for domain 4 (t = 2.17; 95% CI: 26.13, 28.06), mean ± SD (27.10 ± 4.35), (P = 0.033), and Subjective Happiness questionnaire, the differences in the means of elderly males and females were nonsignificant on Mann–Whitney test. Conclusion: This study shows that gender-related factors influence specific areas of QOL, such as females scoring less in physical and psychological factors, whereas scoring better than males in social relationship and environment areas.

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