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Role of Humor and Emotion Regulation towards Health of the Elderly


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1 Department of Psychology, Punjabi University, Patiala , Punjab, India
     

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The population of the elderly is growing rapidly across the globe and is emerging as a serious area of concern for the government and policy makers. U.S. Census Bureau reported that India's older population is projected to quadruple by mid century, while that of the world is expected to triple. Due to increasing longevity and changing lifestyle factors, health of the elderly has become a matter of concern for every nation. Research suggests that the aged population suffer from a range of problems, among which health care demands are at the top. As a result, there is increasing focus on the psychological variables, viz., humor and emotion regulation that can promote health (mental as well as physical). The aim of the present study was to study the contribution of humor and emotion regulation towards health of the elderly. The sample comprised 150 elderly people (75 males and 75 females) in the age range of 55-70 years who had retired from government service and were residing with their families. They were administered Humor Styles Questionnaire, Emotion Regulation Questionnaire, Mental Health Inventory-18 and General Health Rating Index. Inter-correlations were computed and general regression model was applied. The results revealed that humor solely or alongwith reappraisal contributed towards health of the elderly. Both, humor and reappraisal were significantly contributing towards mental health outcomes of the elderly males, whereas, in case of their physical health, affiliative and self-enhancing humor were found to do so. Affiliative humor was found to be a positive predictor of physical health of elderly females, whereas, in case of their mental health, none of these variables were found to be potential predictors. It was further found that health was positively related with affiliative and self-enhancing humor, though its links with aggressive and self-defeating humor were relatively missing. Reappraisal was found to be with affiliative and self-enhancing humor particularly. The links of suppression with humour/health were, by and large, missing foerboth, elderly males as well as females. It was thought-provoking to find a positive relation between reappraisal and suppression.

Keywords

Humor, Emotion, Regulation, Reappraisal, Suppression
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  • Role of Humor and Emotion Regulation towards Health of the Elderly

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Authors

Sangeeta Trama
Department of Psychology, Punjabi University, Patiala , Punjab, India
Vandana Rana
Department of Psychology, Punjabi University, Patiala , Punjab, India

Abstract


The population of the elderly is growing rapidly across the globe and is emerging as a serious area of concern for the government and policy makers. U.S. Census Bureau reported that India's older population is projected to quadruple by mid century, while that of the world is expected to triple. Due to increasing longevity and changing lifestyle factors, health of the elderly has become a matter of concern for every nation. Research suggests that the aged population suffer from a range of problems, among which health care demands are at the top. As a result, there is increasing focus on the psychological variables, viz., humor and emotion regulation that can promote health (mental as well as physical). The aim of the present study was to study the contribution of humor and emotion regulation towards health of the elderly. The sample comprised 150 elderly people (75 males and 75 females) in the age range of 55-70 years who had retired from government service and were residing with their families. They were administered Humor Styles Questionnaire, Emotion Regulation Questionnaire, Mental Health Inventory-18 and General Health Rating Index. Inter-correlations were computed and general regression model was applied. The results revealed that humor solely or alongwith reappraisal contributed towards health of the elderly. Both, humor and reappraisal were significantly contributing towards mental health outcomes of the elderly males, whereas, in case of their physical health, affiliative and self-enhancing humor were found to do so. Affiliative humor was found to be a positive predictor of physical health of elderly females, whereas, in case of their mental health, none of these variables were found to be potential predictors. It was further found that health was positively related with affiliative and self-enhancing humor, though its links with aggressive and self-defeating humor were relatively missing. Reappraisal was found to be with affiliative and self-enhancing humor particularly. The links of suppression with humour/health were, by and large, missing foerboth, elderly males as well as females. It was thought-provoking to find a positive relation between reappraisal and suppression.

Keywords


Humor, Emotion, Regulation, Reappraisal, Suppression



DOI: https://doi.org/10.15614/ijpp%2F2010%2Fv1i1-2%2F49698