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Well-being and belief in a just world among rest home residents

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Several theorists have contended that belief in a just world may be one way elderly rest home residents cope with anxiety, fear, and depression and thus maintain their well-being. In this study we explored belief in a just world and length of time elderly have been residing in rest homes in Lebanon in relation to their levels of self-rated quality of life. A sample of 354 cognitively able elderly people were selected from 36 nursing homes. Interview questionnaires including a translated and validated Self-beliefs in a Just World Scale (BJW-S; Lipkus, Dalbert, & Siegler, 1996) and the EuroQol Visual Analogue Scale (EQ-VAS; Brooks, 1996) that measures respondents' quality of life on a 20cm visual analogue scale. The relationship between Arabic BJW-S scores and length of stay measured on the EQ-VAS was examined using analysis of variance. The findings showed significant main effects for belief in a just world on levels of EQ-VAS, but no significant effects of length of time in rest home on levels of EQ-VAS. Residents who had strong beliefs in a just world seem to have better abilities to cope with negative life events and better self-rated feelings of well-being than did residents who did not believe the world was just and who rated their own well-being lower.
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Keywords: BELIEF IN A JUST WORLD; ELDERLY; LENGTH OF STAY; REST HOME RESIDENTS; WELL-BEING

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 2011

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