Online Program

Does neighborhood poverty modify the association between and depressive symptomatology and allostatic load?

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Vicki Johnson-Lawrence, MS, PhD, Public Health & Health Sciences, University of Michigan-Flint, Flint, MI
Amy J. Schulz, PhD, Department of Health Behavior and Health Education, University of Michigan School of Public Health, Ann Arbor, MI
Carmen A. Stokes, PhD, FNP-BC, RN, CNE, McAuley School ofNursing, University of Detroit Mercy, Detroit, MI
Background: Increased stress, due to social factors including neighborhood socioeconomic deprivation, negatively affects health. Higher allostatic load, which captures cumulative biologic stress, is associated with greater risk for several chronic conditions, including both cardiovascular disease and depression. It is unclear, however, whether the association between depressive symptomatology and allostatic load is modified by neighborhood poverty. Methods: Using data collected by the Healthy Environments Partnership, a community based participatory research partnership, multilevel regression analyses examined the moderating effects of neighborhood poverty on associations between depression and allostatic load. Neighborhood poverty was measured as the proportion of households within the neighborhood living in poverty as defined by the US Census. Depressive symptomatology was captured using the Center for Epidemiologic Studies of Depression (CES-D) scale. Results: Depressive symptomatology was associated with increased allostatic load scores (b=0.20, SE=0.09, p=0.03). Moderating effects of neighborhood poverty were suggested (b=0.02, SE=0.01, p=0.01). Among residents of high poverty (80%) neighborhoods, greater depressive symptomatology was associated with increased allostatic load scores. Implications: Neighborhood poverty modified the association between depressive symptomatology and allostatic load. Findings suggest variation in physical health when both socioeconomic stressors and mental health are considered. This interaction highlights the interconnectedness of social context, mental health, and physical health. Additional work to understand the demographic characteristics of the sample by poverty level, depressive symptomatology, and allostatic load will also be presented to better understand these associations.

Learning Areas:

Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Compare the associations between depressive symptomatology and allostatic load for residents of high and low poverty neighborhoods in a multiethnic sample of adults from Detroit, Mchigan.

Keyword(s): Co-morbid, Mental Health

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have participated in a significant amount of research focused on both mental and physical health outcomes. Among my scientific interests include understanding health disparities in the role of socioeconomic status for both mental and physical health conditions.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.