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Well-being among older gay and bisexual men and women in England: a cross-sectional population study

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posted on 2023-08-30, 15:56 authored by Igor Grabovac, Lee Smith, Daragh T. McDermott, Sinisa Stefanac, Lin Yang, Nicola Veronese, Sarah E. Jackson
Objectives: Lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) older people present an under represented population in research, with limited research citing higher depression prevalence, loneliness, rejection and overall lower health and well-being outcomes. Our study compares well-being, defined as quality of life, life satisfaction, sexual satisfaction and depression, among lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) to their heterosexual peers. Design: Cross-sectional population study using data from the English Longitudinal Study of Aging (ELSA), a representative panel study of older adults aged 50 and older. Setting and Participants: Data were from ELSA-Wave 6, included data collected 2012/2013. A total of 5691 participants were included in the analysis with 326 (5.7%) self-identifying as LGB. Measures: Well-being was measured using: CASP-19, a quality of life questionnaire; Satisfaction with Life Scale for life satisfaction and Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale for depressive symptoms; while sexual satisfaction was asked using the question: “During the past three months, how satisfied have you been with your overall sex life?”. T-test and Chi-square test were used for differences in socio-demographic characteristics between LGB and heterosexual participants. Bivariate logistical regression and linear regression were used for associations between sexual orientation and well-being outcomes. Results: In unadjusted models, LGB participants reported significantly lower mean quality of life and life satisfaction as well as significantly lower odds of reporting satisfaction with their overall sex life and higher odds of reporting depressive symptoms above threshold. After adjustment for sociodemographic and health-related covariates, there remained significant differences between LGB and heterosexual groups in mean quality of life scores (B=-0.96, 95% CI -1.87 to -0.06, p=0.037) and odds of sexual satisfaction (OR=0.56, 95% CI 0.38 to 0.82, p=0.003). Conclusions/Implications: LGB older people report lower quality of life and lower sexual satisfaction than their heterosexual counterparts, possibly associated with a number of unwanted social experiences.



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Journal of the American Medical Directors Association





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