Impact Factor 2.323

The 1st most cited journal in Multidisciplinary Psychology

Original Research ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Psychol. | doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2018.00378

Perceived Stress in Adults aged 65 to 90: Relations to Facets of Time Perspective and COMT Val158Met Polymorphism

  • 1Department of Psychology, Umeå University, Sweden
  • 2Department of Clinical Sciences, Division of Psychiatry, Umeå university, Sweden

This study examined the relation between perceived stress and time perspective (views of past, present, future) in a population-based sample of older adults (65-90 years, N = 340). The Perceived Questionnaire (PSQ index) was used to measure stress and the Swedish version of the Zimbardo Time Perspective Inventory (S-ZTPI) was used to operationalize time perspective. Unlike the original inventory, S-ZTPI separates positive and negative aspects of a future time perspective and we hypothesized that the Future Negative scale would be important to account for variations in stress. Additionally, associations with Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism were examined, motivated by prior associations of this single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) with stress (or “anxiety”) related personality traits. In line with the hypotheses, Future Negative was the strongest predictor of PSQ index scores in multiple regression analyses. In related vein, the dichotomization of the unitary Future scale increased the association between PSQ scores and a measure of deviations from a balanced time perspective, i.e. a difference between proposed optimal and observed ZTPI profile. Finally, higher levels of stress as well as higher scores on Future Negative were observed in COMT Val/Val carriers, at least among men. This suggests a shared dopaminergic genetic influence on these variables. Collectively, the results demonstrate that perceived stress is closely linked to time perspective and highlight the need to take negative aspects of a future temporal orientation into account to understand this relation.

Keywords: perceived stress, time perspective, catechol-O-methyltransferase, older adults, Val15Met polymorphsim

Received: 01 Nov 2017; Accepted: 07 Mar 2018.

Edited by:

Monika Fleischhauer, Medizinische Hochschule Brandenburg Theodor Fontane, Germany

Reviewed by:

Fuschia M. Sirois, University of Sheffield, United Kingdom
Thomas Plieger, Universität Bonn, Germany  

Copyright: © 2018 Rönnlund, Åström, Adolfsson and Carelli. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: PhD. Michael Rönnlund, Department of Psychology, Umeå University, Umeå, Sweden,