Background: Our feelings are known to influence our physical condition . In psychological research, the Semantic Differential Technique (SD technique) is used to measure images subjects produce of themselves based on their emotions, feelings and background. We applied this method to measuring the life images of patients in a geriatric hospital.Methods and Results: In 1995, individual interviews using the SD technique were carried out on 94 patients (31 men and 63 women, 50-96 y/o) in a geriatric hospital in Shimizu City . The interviews were based on two concepts; self image (SI), and hospital life image (HI). The scales consisted of 34 paired adjectives with opposite meanings and each scale had 7 degrees. Factor analysis identified the following 4 factors, specificity of oneself, active state, functions of living and human relations. Each factor showed a high average value from 4.56 to 5.25, thus indicating a favorable condition. The average for the first factor was SI: 5.13, sd 0.97, HI: 5.22, sd 1.08, that of the second factor was SI: 4.38, sd 1.21, HI: 4.93, sd 1.09, that of the third factor was SI: 5.05, sd 1.10, HI: 5.24, sd 1.20 and that of the fourth factor was SI: 4.97, sd 1.15, HI: 5.41, sd 1.16. The average image of hospital life was higher than that of the self image. These data indicate that hospitalized patients have positive feelings about their hospital lives. Women were also shown to be better at human interrelationships than men.Conclusion: The average subjective image and in-hospital life image was high, suggesting that the elderly have a positive self-image and that they feel comfortable at the hospital. Future research needs to establish whether these positive self images can be generalized to the population as a whole, or whether they are specific to the elderly.
The aim of this study was to clarify the percentages of elderly people living in a rural community of Japan who were able to and those who were not able to maintain active independence in instrumental activities of daily living (IADL) over a period of 8 years and the lifestyle factors that influence the maintenance of active independence. The subjects were 410 elderly people (aged 65 years or over) living in Nangai, Akita Prefecture who were independent in all IADL in the baseline survey conducted in 1988. The survey was conducted by interviews. There were 25 items related to lifestyle in the survey, including 17 items concerning daily habits and 8 items concerning frequency of food intake. A follow-up survey of the 410 subjects was conducted 8 years later, in 1996. The percentages of men and women subjects who were still independent in IADL at the time of the follow-up survey were 54.2% and 55.1%, respectively. Multiple logistic regression analysis controlling for age and education was carried out to determine the degrees to which lifestyles influence active self-maintenance. It was found that de-grees of active self-maintenance were high significantly in men who slept 6-8 hours daily and ate seaweed almost every day and in women who read newspapers/magazines and ate seafood and fruit almost every day. These findings show that efforts to maintain intellectual interests and efforts to maintain a diet that includes sufficient vegetables and protein, especially protein from fishes, may be useful to maintain active independence in the elderly.
A genetic analysis was conducted in order to evaluate to what extent alcohol use and smoking are influenced by genetic or environmental factors. The subjects were adult 149 monozygotic twin pairs and 87 parent-offspring pairs who answered a mailed questionnaire, including requests for information on alcohol use and smoking. Covariance structure analysis was performed using program packages PRELIS2 and LISREL8. The results demonstrated that (1) significant heritability were obtained for both alcohol use (73% for male and 64% for female) and smoking (58% for male and 33% for female), (2) dominance genetic effects were observed for male alcohol use and common (within family) environmental effects were observed for female smoking, (3) a higher genetic effects were observed for alcohol use than for smoking in both sexes, (4) a higher environmental effects were observed for female than for male in both behaviors, (5) the co-occurrence of both behaviors were in part influenced by common genetic/environmental factors, with the additive genetic correlations of. 54 for males and. 50 for females, and random environmental correlations of. 34 for males and. 33 for females. These results show that lifestyles, such as alcohol use and smoking, are under substantial genetic control. It is concluded that not only environmental factors, but genetic factors should be considered in the proper management of alcohol use and smoking.