Educational level as a protective factor against the influence of depressive symptoms on cognition in older adults: Implications for functional independence during a 10-year follow-up

Irene Cano-López*, Marta Aliño, Aránzazu Duque, Paula Martínez, Mercedes Almela, Mariá J. Garciá-Rubio, Sara Puig-Perez

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Objectives: 

To examine whether the educational level moderates the relationship between baseline depressive symptoms and cognitive functioning at 5- and 10-year follow-ups in older adults, considering the association between cognitive functioning and difficulty with activities of daily living (ADL). 

Design: 

Using a prospective design, a path analysis was performed. Setting: In-home, face-to-face interviews and self-administered questionnaires, within the National Social Life, Health, and Aging Project. 

Participants: 

In total, 1,461 participants (mean age = 66.62) were followed up from Wave 1 (baseline) to Wave 2 (at 5 years) and Wave 3 (at 10 years). Measurements: Depressive symptoms were assessed at baseline. Cognitive functioning and difficulty with ADL were assessed at baseline and at 5 and 10 years. 

Results: 

Educational level moderates the relationship between depressive symptoms and cognitive functioning at 5 years (β = 0.07, SE = 0.03, p = 0.04, Cohen's f 2 = 0.02), being depressive symptoms related to poor cognitive functioning only at low educational levels. Cognitive functioning predicts difficulty with ADL at 5 and 10 years (β = -0.08, SE = 0.03, p = 0.008, Cohen's f 2 = 0.01; β = -0.09, SE = 0.03, p = 0.006, Cohen's f 2 = 0.02). The proposed model yielded excellent fit (CFI = 1.00, RMSEA = 0.0001, 90% CI 0.0001-0.03, SRMR = 0.004, and χ2(8) = 7.16, p = 0.52). 

Conclusions: 

Cognitive reserve may act as a protective factor against the effect of depressive symptoms on cognition in older adults, which, in turn, is relevant to their functional independence.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)813-825
JournalInternational Psychogeriatrics
Volume33
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Keywords

  • AGING PROJECT NSHAP
  • ALZHEIMERS-DISEASE
  • CEREBRAL ATROPHY
  • COMMUNITY
  • DECLINE
  • DEMENTIA
  • IMPAIRMENT
  • MINI-MENTAL-STATE
  • NATIONAL SOCIAL-LIFE
  • QUALITY-OF-LIFE
  • activities of daily living (ADL)
  • aging
  • cognitive impairment
  • depressive symptoms
  • education

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Educational level as a protective factor against the influence of depressive symptoms on cognition in older adults: Implications for functional independence during a 10-year follow-up'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this