Relationships among active engagement in life activities and quality of life for assisted-living residents

Beverly P. Horowitz, Elizabeth Vanner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations

Abstract

This cross-sectional research explored the relationships between active engagement in life activities (leisure, social, and instrumental activities of daily living) and quality of life for seniors aged 65 and older residing in assisted living facilities. It is increasingly recognized that active participation in diverse physical, cognitive, and social activities can promote older adults' quality of life, including physical and mental health, but there is limited information about this in the population of residents in assisted living facilities. It is estimated that there are one million older adults residing in assisted living facilities, making assisted living facilities a rapidly growing segment of senior housing. Older adults who relocate to assisted living facilities commonly experience lifestyle changes, often related to their altered physical and social environment, reduced demands regarding household chores and meal preparation, and new opportunities for recreation and socialization. In this study, interviews were conducted with 131 ambulatory residents from assisted living facilities in the New York City metropolitan area using the 55-Item Activity Checklist, SF-36v2, Life Satisfaction Index-Z, and demographic questions. Results found significant low to moderate correlations between retained engagement in life activities (leisure, social, and instrumental activities of daily living) and life satisfaction, and several quality of life domains, including physical functioning, mental health, general health, and vitality. Older adults continued to engage in a greater percentage of everyday life activities they identified as important. This data supports exploration of client-centered activity programs to promote participation of residents in assisted living facilities in diverse activities to both maintain resident functional abilities and manage functional decline.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)130-150
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Housing for the Elderly
Volume24
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2010
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Assisted living
  • Instrumental activities of daily living
  • Leisure
  • Life satisfaction
  • Older adults
  • Quality of life
  • Social

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gerontology
  • Public Administration
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies

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