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Finnmark Heart Study: employment status and parenthood as predictors of psychological health in women, 20-49 years

, : Finnmark Heart Study: employment status and parenthood as predictors of psychological health in women, 20-49 years. International Journal of Epidemiology 23(1): 82-90

This study examined the influence of employment status and presence of young children in the household on psychological health in a population-based sample of 3103 women aged 20-49 years. Women were classified by employment status and parental status, thus creating four groups for comparison. After excluding women reporting chronic diseases and women receiving sickness, rehabilitation, unemployment or disability benefits, analyses indicated that problems of coping, dissatisfaction with life, depression and loneliness were greatest among homemakers, particularly among those with young children. Analyses adjusted for age, education, marital status and place of residence yielded similar results. Stratification by marital status and place of residence revealed two exceptions to this general pattern: unmarried employed women with young children had the highest rate of coping problems--and parenthood, not employment status, was the most important factor for psychological health problems in rural areas. Discrepancies between an individual's behaviour and the norm in society regarding women's employment, may partly explain the findings.


PMID: 8194928

DOI: 10.1093/ije/23.1.82

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