Well-being and health from age 70 to 100: findings from the Berlin Aging Study

ABSTRACT An individual's personal sense of well-being (SWB) is an indicator of psychological adjustment and successful ageing. Health and functional capacity are viewed as important sources of life quality in old age but very little is known about their effects on SWB over time. Can older individuals maintain SWB despite declining health? Longitudinal data from the Berlin Aging Study, a locally representative sample of men and women aged 70 to 100+, indicate that cumulative health-related chronic life strains that characterize the Fourth Age set a constraint on the potential of the older individual to experience the positive side of life.