Social behavior and life satisfaction among nursing home patients.
Because of nursing’s increased concern for sound knowledge as a basis for providing services to those confined to nursing homes, this study was undertaken as an exploratory investigation of the processes related to life satisfaction in nursing home patients. A subjective measurer of life satisfaction was used in order to determine the degree of psychological well-being. In light of the controversy regarding social activity as a criterion for evaluating successful aging, the variable social involvement and activity was studied in relation to life satisfaction of nursing home patients. Since all nursing home patients are not elderly, although they are all undergoing the aging process, the common variable, confinement, was of interest in regard to activity and life satisfaction. The hypothesis proposed a relationship between life satisfaction and social interest and involvement. Twenty-three nursing home residents were interviewed and administered the Neugarten (1961) Life Satisfaction Indices. A Social Behavioral Rating Scale (SBRS) designed for nursing home patients was completed by nursing home personnel on each subject. A correlational analysis did not yield a statistically significant relationship between life satisfaction and social behavior, interest and involvement, r = .01. Thus, the data failed to support the hypothesis. Of all the variables studied only three correlated significantly with life satisfaction. Length of time in the nursing home, r = .44, p < .05, and what the subject liked to do in the nursing home r = .49, p < .05 correlated positively with life satisfaction. The third variable was the SBRS item irritability. Subjects who demonstrated irritable behavior were found to be less satisfied with their lives. In summary, the data suggested that things that make a person satisfied with his life do not necessarily have to do with social activity and involvement. Although there was no correlation between age and life satisfaction, there was decreased activity and social interaction with age. Subjects with large families were more social involved. Similar scores on the Life Satisfaction Indices were found between the nursing home sample and scores previously established on a non-institutionalized sample. Further study of the variables of activity, life satisfaction, and confinement in nursing home patients was suggested.
University of Utah;
Social Behavior; Nursing Homes;
University of Utah;
Relation-Is Version Of
Digital reproduction of “Social behavior and life satisfaction among nursing home patients.” Spencer S. Eccles Health Sciences Library. Print version of “Social behavior and life satisfaction among nursing home patients.” available at J. Willard Marriott Library Special Collection. RC39.5 1973 .H3.