Mental health and wellbeing of older workers in Australia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Population ageing has catalyzed worldwide social and political reform to encourage continued work and delayed retirement. These changes necessitate an understanding of the impact of working later in life on mental health and wellbeing. The aim of this study was to examine the relationship of age and work force status (working full time, part time, or retired) with mental health and wellbeing in Australian men and women past the average retirement age of 60. The effects of potential covariates (i.e., marriage, physical health, and financial stress) were also examined, and the impact of low qualification levels and physically demanding occupations were explored. A total of 2,149 men and women aged 60–79 from the 2007 National Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing were included in the analyses. Results indicated that older age groups, people working part time, and men reported the best mental health and wellbeing outcomes. A minority of the significant main effects became be nonsignificant after controlling for marriage, financial stress, and physical health conditions in the models. Qualification levels and physically demanding occupations were not significant predictors for mental health and wellbeing. Taken together, these results suggest that there does not appear to be categorically beneficial or harmful outcomes for men and women working later in life, nor for those who have retired. People working part time later in life consistently reported the best mental health and wellbeing outcomes. Implications of the results are discussed in the context of the literature.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)202-213
Number of pages12
JournalWork, aging and retirement
Volume1
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2015

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