Skip to main content
    • Aa
    • Aa
  • Get access
    Check if you have access via personal or institutional login
  • Cited by 58
  • Cited by
    This article has been cited by the following publications. This list is generated based on data provided by CrossRef.

    Hori, Daisuke Tsujiguchi, Hiromasa Kambayashi, Yasuhiro Hamagishi, Toshio Kitaoka, Masami Mitoma, Junko Asakura, Hiroki Suzuki, Fumihiko Anyenda, Enoch Olando Nguyen, Thao Thi Thu Hibino, Yuri Shibata, Aki Hayashi, Koichi Sagara, Takiko Sasahara, Shinichiro Matsuzaki, Ichiyo Hatta, Kotaro Konoshita, Tadashi and Nakamura, Hiroyuki 2016. The associations between lifestyles and mental health using the General Health Questionnaire 12-items are different dependently on age and sex: a population-based cross-sectional study in Kanazawa, Japan. Environmental Health and Preventive Medicine,

    Morrissey, Karyn Kinderman, Peter Pontin, Eleanor Tai, Sara and Schwannauer, Mathias 2016. Web based health surveys: Using a Two Step Heckman model to examine their potential for population health analysis. Social Science & Medicine, Vol. 163, p. 45.

    O'Reilly, Aileen Peiper, Nicholas O'Keeffe, Lynsey Illback, Robert and Clayton, Richard 2016. Performance of the CORE-10 and YP-CORE measures in a sample of youth engaging with a community mental health service. International Journal of Methods in Psychiatric Research, p. n/a.

    Abou Abbas, Linda Salameh, Pascale Nasser, Wissam Nasser, Zeina and Godin, Isabelle 2015. Body mass index and psychological distress among Lebanese University students: examining the moderating effect of gender. International Journal of Adolescence and Youth, p. 1.

    Aghighi, A Grigoryan, V H and Delavar, A 2015. Psychological determinants of erectile dysfunction among middle-aged men. International Journal of Impotence Research, Vol. 27, Issue. 2, p. 63.

    Corrigan, Patrick W. Powell, Karina J. and Al-Khouja, Maya A. 2015. Examining the Impact of Public Service Announcements on Help Seeking and Stigma. The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, Vol. 203, Issue. 11, p. 836.

    Tran, Thanh V. DeMarco, Rosanna Chan, Keith and Nguyen, Thuc-Nhi 2015. Race, age and serious psychological distress in the USA. International Journal of Culture and Mental Health, Vol. 8, Issue. 2, p. 162.

    Armstrong, Lucy Wuthrich, Viviana M. Knight, Ashleigh and Joiner, Richard 2014. Worry and Depression in the Old and Young: Differences and Mediating Factors. Behaviour Change, Vol. 31, Issue. 04, p. 279.

    Drapeau, Aline Marchand, Alain and Forest, Charlotte 2014. Gender differences in the age-cohort distribution of psychological distress in Canadian adults: findings from a national longitudinal survey. BMC Psychology, Vol. 2, Issue. 1,

    Gomez, Rapson Summers, Mathew Summers, Avril Wolf, Anna and Summers, Jeffery J. 2014. Depression Anxiety Stress Scales-21: Factor Structure and Test-Retest Invariance, and Temporal Stability and Uniqueness of Latent Factors in Older Adults. Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment, Vol. 36, Issue. 2, p. 308.

    Jarman, Lisa Martin, Angela Venn, Alison Otahal, Petr Taylor, Roscoe Teale, Brook and Sanderson, Kristy 2014. Prevalence and correlates of psychological distress in a large and diverse public sector workforce: baseline results from Partnering Healthy@Work. BMC Public Health, Vol. 14, Issue. 1,

    L. Wilkinson, Larrell Kerr, Jelani Smith, Temple Salaam, Muhammad W. Flournoy, Minnjuan Magwood, Jametta Williams, Edith and Glover, Saundra 2014. Psychological health and discrimination experience among graduate students: findings from the Stress Coping Obstruction Prevention & Education (SCOPE) Study. Ethnicity and Inequalities in Health and Social Care, Vol. 7, Issue. 3, p. 122.

    Missinne, Sarah Vandeviver, Christophe Van de Velde, Sarah and Bracke, Piet 2014. Measurement equivalence of the CES-D 8 depression-scale among the ageing population in eleven European countries. Social Science Research, Vol. 46, p. 38.

    Morimoto, Hiroshi Shimada, Hironori and Ozaki, Kenichi 2014. Sociocultural Beliefs, As Well As Goodness of Fit, Influence the Effectiveness of Coping in Japanese Workers. International Journal of Behavioral Medicine, Vol. 21, Issue. 3, p. 447.

    Sultan, Dawood H Norris, Claire M Avendano, Maryouri Roberts, Makeda and Davis, Brandy 2014. An examination of class differences in network capital, social support and psychological distress in Orleans Parish prior to Hurricane Katrina. Health Sociology Review, Vol. 23, Issue. 3, p. 178.

    Carvalho, André F. Hyphantis, Thomas N. Taunay, Tauily C. Macêdo, Danielle S. Floros, Georgios D. Ottoni, Gustavo L. Fountoulakis, Konstantinos N. and Lara, Diogo R. 2013. The relationship between affective temperaments, defensive styles and depressive symptoms in a large sample. Journal of Affective Disorders, Vol. 146, Issue. 1, p. 58.

    Gu, Ja K. Charles, Luenda E. Burchfiel, Cecil M. Andrew, Michael E. Ma, Claudia Bang, Ki Moon and Violanti, John M. 2013. Associations between Psychological Distress and Body Mass Index among Law Enforcement Officers: The National Health Interview Survey 2004-2010. Safety and Health at Work, Vol. 4, Issue. 1, p. 52.

    Kikuchi, Hiroyuki Takamiya, Tomoko Odagiri, Yuko Ohya, Yumiko Shimomitsu, Teruichi and Inoue, Shigeru 2013. Mental illness and a high-risk, elderly Japanese population: characteristic differences related to gender and residential location. Psychogeriatrics, Vol. 13, Issue. 4, p. 229.

    Lewis, Adam M. Liu, Dawei Stuart, Scott P. and Ryan, Ginny 2013. Less depressed or less forthcoming? Self-report of depression symptoms in women preparing for in vitro fertilization. Archives of Women's Mental Health, Vol. 16, Issue. 2, p. 87.

    Anstey, K. J. Christensen, H. Butterworth, P. Easteal, S. Mackinnon, A. Jacomb, T. Maxwell, K. Rodgers, B. Windsor, T. Cherbuin, N. and Jorm, A. F. 2012. Cohort Profile: The PATH through life project. International Journal of Epidemiology, Vol. 41, Issue. 4, p. 951.


Age group differences in psychological distress: the role of psychosocial risk factors that vary with age

  • A. F. JORM (a1), T. D. WINDSOR (a1), K. B. G. DEAR (a1), K. J. ANSTEY (a1), H. CHRISTENSEN (a1) and B. RODGERS (a1)
  • DOI:
  • Published online: 01 September 2005

Background. There is continuing controversy about how age affects depression and anxiety, with a lack of consistent results across studies. Two reasons for this inconsistency are age bias in measures and different patterns of exposure to risk factors across age groups in various studies.

Method. Data on anxiety and depression symptoms were collected in a community survey of 7485 persons aged 20–24, 40–44 or 60–64 years. These measures were investigated for factorial invariance across age groups. Data were also collected on a wide range of potential risk factors, including social, physical health and personal factors, with the aim of determining whether these factors might partly or wholly account for age group differences.

Results. The invariance of correlated latent factors representing anxiety and depression was examined across age groups, and a generalized measure of psychological distress was computed. Depression, anxiety and psychological distress showed a decline across age groups for females and a decline from 40–44 to 60–64 years for males. Some of these age differences were accounted for by other risk factors, with the most important being recent crises at work and negative social relationships with family and friends.

Conclusion. Psychological distress generally declined across the age range 20–64 years and this was not attributable to measurement bias. Differential exposure to risk factors explained some, but not all, of the age group difference. Therefore other mechanisms that explain the lower level of distress in older age groups remain to be identified.

Corresponding author
ORYGEN Research Centre, University of Melbourne, Locked Bag 10, Parkville 3052, Australia. (Email:
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Psychological Medicine
  • ISSN: 0033-2917
  • EISSN: 1469-8978
  • URL: /core/journals/psychological-medicine
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *