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Title: Chronic stress and psychological well-being: Evidence from Thailand on household crowding
Authors: Theodore D. Fuller
John N. Edwards
Sairudee Vorakitphokatorn
Santhat Sermsri
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Mahidol University
Keywords: Arts and Humanities;Social Sciences
Issue Date: 1-Jan-1996
Citation: Social Science and Medicine. Vol.42, No.2 (1996), 265-280
Abstract: This paper examines the effect of one form of chronic stress - household crowding - on psychological well-being, as measured by multiple inverse indicators of psychological well-being. We rely on data from a large (n = 2017) random sample of households in Bangkok, Thailand, a context that has a higher level and broader range of crowding than typically found in the United States. Objective household crowding is found to be detrimental to psychological well-being, controlling for a number of background characteristics. The effect of objective crowding is mediated by subjective crowding, which has strong, consistent and direct detrimental effects on well-being. There is no evidence of a gender effect. Extended family households are not uncommon in Bangkok, but the effects of objective and subjective crowding are similar in both two- and three-generation households, as well as in one- and multiple-couple households. The argument that subjective crowding is an effect, rather than a cause, of psychological well-being is examined and rejected. The findings suggest that crowding, as a chronic source of stress, constitutes a major threat to psychological well-being. Although the empirical analyses are based on data from one city, we frame the issue of household crowding in a historical and theoretical context in order to suggest in which cultural settings household crowding is most likely to have detrimental effects on psychological well-being.
ISSN: 02779536
Appears in Collections:Scopus 1991-2000

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