Objectives: We examined whether specific facets are more robust predictors of mortality risk than overall trait openness in a sample of older men. Methods: The current investigation used data from 1,349 men from the Veterans Affairs Normative Aging Study. From 1990-1991 to 2008, 547 (41%) had died. We used exploratory factor analysis to extract facets of openness, followed by proportional hazards modeling to examine 18-year mortality risk. Results: Two facets emerged from the openness adjectives: intellect and creativity. In the fully adjusted model, only creativity predicted mortality risk. A 1-SD increase in creativity was associated with a 12% decrease in mortality risk. Discussion: The study demonstrated that consideration of facets allows for a more precise understanding of the personality-health association. Higher levels of creativity predict longer survival in a sample of older men which provides preliminary support of the protective role creativity has on health even at advanced ages.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health(social science)
- Sociology and Political Science
- Life-span and Life-course Studies