Akinyemi and Aransiola [Abstract]

Gender perspectives in self assessment of quality of life of the elderly in South-Western Nigeria. Are there variations in quality of life among ageing men and women? [Full text]

Akanni Akinyemi [1]
Joshua Aransiola [2]

Abstract: This study examined gender variations in self reported quality of life among randomly selected elderly populations in selected Yoruba communities in three local government areas of Osun State Nigeria. Data was generated through cross-sectional survey of 947 elderly population aged 60 years and above. Two internationally tested instruments were used to assess quality of life status among the respondents- Activities of Daily Life (with 14 items scales) (ADL) and Aging Male Symptoms (AMS) (with 17 items scales and adapted for both males and females). The analysis was basically descriptive through the use of simple frequency description. Findings showed that elderly female respondents fared better than the male counterparts on some of the measures. Also, females were more likely than their spouse to be able to cope without any assistance. Results from males with a living spouse showed that majority of the spouse (females) were more likely to need assistance for usual daily activities compared with the male (husband). This trend was also confirmed among female respondents as a fewer proportion of spouse (male) can cope without any help compared with females. The AMS showed that male reported a better health status in the domains of sexual, psychosocial and somatic measures. The study concluded that measures of quality of life were likely to favour elderly females than males because of many challenges and responsibilities of males. Also, age differences may play an important influence in this. The study raised the need for more in-depth studies to investigate the role of social –cultural factors of male dominance and patriarchal system on quality of life of the elderly from the gender lens.

Keywords: Gender, quality of life, Nigeria

[1] Demography and Social Statistics Department, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife, Nigeria,
[2] Sociology and Anthropology Department, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife, Nigeria