Middle-aged at risk from rows with family, neighbours

Think again before you pick another fight with your tearaway daughter or go head-to-toe once more with the people next door over their late-night parties.

Danish researchers say people who argue constantly with relatives, friends or neighbours are more than twice as likely to die in .

Men, and those who are unemployed, seem to be especially at risk, they add.

In 2000, investigators enrolled nearly 10,000 Danes aged 36-52 in a long-term study about their health and lifestyle, and followed them for the next 11 years.

By the end of this period, four percent of the women participants, and six percent of the men, had died—and the researchers found a clear link between mortality and disputation.

Those who had reported they argued frequently with anyone in their , from partners and relatives to friends and neighbours, were between two and three times more likely to die from any cause compared with counterparts who had said these incidents were rare.

The probe took into account a range of factors that could potentially skew the findings, such as symptoms of depression, but it did not incorporate .

Also revealing, but less significant, was the link between and worries or demands generated by partners or children.

Learning how to handle relationship stress could be a lifesaver, says the paper, led by Rikke Lund of the University of Copenhagen.

"Skills in handling worries and demands from close social relations, as well as conflict management within couples and families and also in local communities, may be important strategies for reducing ," it says.

Previous research has confirmed that strong friendships and a stable partnership are beneficial for health, but there have been few attempts to delve into the reverse side.

The study appears Thursday in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Footpaths and parks support active school commute

date 1 hour ago

While it probably won't make the idea of attending school more appealing social scientists say different infrastructure and behaviour change programs are key to encouraging young people to take a more active ...

Food barometer measures a population’'s eating habits

date 2 hours ago

A survey by Taylor's-Toulouse University Centre (TTUC) is collecting data on the food habits of individuals and how their choices are related to modernisation and other social factors. Results show that almost ...

Who you gonna call? Beijing smokebusters to go on patrol

date 6 hours ago

China's capital seeks to snuff out smoking in indoor public places on Monday with a new ban, unprecedented fines and a hotline to report offenders, but enforcement is doubtful in one of the world's most tobacco-addicted countries.

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.