Comparison of Factors Related to Elderly People's Purpose of Life in Japan and Thailand

Takashi Ohue, Darunee Rujkorakarn, Amorn Suwannimitr, Supaporn Aryamuang, Nongyaow Meethien
2015 Health (Irvine, Calif.)  
Purpose: In the present study, the features of "purpose of life" of elderly persons in Japan and Thailand are clarified by focusing on this concept and its related factors, and through the comparison of the results of Japan and Thailand. Methods: The Japanese subjects consist of the elderly aged 60 or older. The Thai subjects consist of the elderly aged 60 or older who live in Thailand. A sum of 250 subjects (men and women) per country will be studied. They were asked about their individual
more » ... heir individual attribution and maintenance of healthy condition. Moreover, 19 items were examined as events leading to life purpose. These items were measured using the Philadelphia Geriatric Center Morale Scale, General Health Questionnaire (GHQ) and Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADL). Results: Data from 200 elderly people (male: 67, female: 133) in Thailand and 234 elderly people (male: 49, female: 185) in Japan were used in the analysis. Regarding an "Events Leading to Life Purpose," it was suggested that "activities to enhance learning and culture" and "neighbors and friends, and socializing with acquaintances" helped both in Japan and Thailand. Moreover, "elderly persons' club activities" and "child" were effective in Thailand, while "spouse" and "grandchild" were effective in Japan. Moreover, Model 1 (event, disease → purpose of life → mental health, and IADL) that became purpose of life for both countries was adopted. Conclusion: In order to improve older adults' mental health and ADL by improving "purpose of life", it is required to increase the events leading to life purpose and to prevent illness for both countries. In particular, "activities to enhance learning and culture" and "neighbors and friends, and socializing with acquaintances" was the activity which raises "purpose of life". Then, "elderly persons' club activities" and "child" were effective in Thailand, while "spouse" and "grandchild" were effective in Japan.
doi:10.4236/health.2015.710148 fatcat:xe5taee2arf6dlaakhfujt7i2y