Optimism associated with a lower risk of depression
In the Zutphen Elderly Study, a high level of optimism in 1985 was associated with a 77% lower risk of depressive symptoms in either 1990, 1995 or 2000. Men free of depressive symptoms in 1990 had a 63% lower cumulative 10-year incidence of depressive symptoms. These results suggest that optimistic elderly men are at a lower risk to develop depressive symptoms.
Measuring optimism and depression
Dispositional optimism was assessed with a 4-item questionnaire of the Central Bureau of Statistics in The Netherlands and depressive symptoms with the 20-items validated Zung self-rating depression scale.