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Erschienen in: Zeitschrift für Gerontologie und Geriatrie 4/2023

29.03.2023 | Themenschwerpunkt

Self-reported hearing and awareness of age-related change

A domain-specific perspective

verfasst von: Markus Wettstein, Anna Kornadt, Vera Heyl, Hans-Werner Wahl

Erschienen in: Zeitschrift für Gerontologie und Geriatrie | Ausgabe 4/2023

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Abstract

Background

Impaired hearing is associated with disadvantages in developmental outcomes, such as compromised everyday social communication or reduced well-being. Hearing impairment might also have an impact on how individuals evaluate their own aging as deterioration in hearing can be interpreted as being age-related and as a phenomenon individuals attribute to getting older.

Objective

This study investigated how self-reported hearing is related to awareness of age-related change (AARC).

Material and methods

AARC is a multidimensional construct comprising perceived age-related gains and losses in general as well as across five functional domains (health and physical functioning, cognitive functioning, interpersonal relations, social cognitive and social emotional functioning, lifestyle and engagement). A sample of 423 individuals (age range 40–98 years; mean age, M = 62.9 years; standard deviation (SD) = 11.8 years) was assessed up to 3 times over approximately 5 years.

Results

Based on longitudinal multilevel regression models, controlling for age, gender, subjective health and education, it was found that poorer self-reported hearing was associated with more perceived general AARC losses as well as with more AARC losses in health and physical functioning and in cognitive functioning at baseline. With an older age at baseline, poorer self-reported hearing was associated with a steeper decline in AARC gains regarding interpersonal relations over time, whereas in those who were younger at baseline poorer hearing was related to fewer gains in social cognitive and social emotional functioning at baseline.

Discussion

Self-reported hearing reveals differential associations with AARC domains; however, changes in most AARC domains of gains and losses seem to be only weakly related to subjective hearing.
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Fußnoten
1
Wave 3 was approved by the Institutional Ethics Review Board of the Faculty of Behavioral and Empirical Cultural Sciences of Heidelberg University. Waves 1–2 were approved by the Colorado State University (CSU) Institutional Review Board (IRB) Protocol 10-2080H based on a formal cooperation between Heidelberg University and CSU. All study participants provided written informed consent before study participation and were informed that they could change their minds and withdraw their agreement any time.
 
2
The fourth measurement occasion (T4 in June-September 2020, n = 233) included only an AARC short-form, which does not allow for a differentiation of AARC subdomains. Therefore, as we were particularly interested in associations of AARC subdomains with self-reported hearing, T4 was not used in the present analyses.
 
3
None of the items related to health and physical functioning explicitly addressed sensory functions such as hearing.
 
4
When we re-computed all models with only hearing, time, and hearing * time as predictors, the same significant effects of hearing were found as in the extended models, and only two additional effects reached statistical significance: decline in AARC lifestyle gains was steeper among those with poorer self-rated hearing (in the extended model with other predictors, this effect was reduced to p = 0.07), and those with poorer self-rated hearing had more perceived lifestyle losses at baseline (no longer significant in the extended models). We interpret these additional effects as not robust, given that they were no longer significant after including the covariates.
 
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Metadaten
Titel
Self-reported hearing and awareness of age-related change
A domain-specific perspective
verfasst von
Markus Wettstein
Anna Kornadt
Vera Heyl
Hans-Werner Wahl
Publikationsdatum
29.03.2023
Verlag
Springer Medizin
Erschienen in
Zeitschrift für Gerontologie und Geriatrie / Ausgabe 4/2023
Print ISSN: 0948-6704
Elektronische ISSN: 1435-1269
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1007/s00391-023-02171-6

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