Marital Status, Marital Transitions, and Sleep Quality in Mid to Late Life

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This study aimed to understand how marital status and marital transitions were related to sleep quality in mid to late life and whether these findings differed by gender. Data from 2,872 participants 50–74 years old from the ORANJ BOWLSM, a longitudinal panel study in New Jersey, were used. Marital status and sleep quality were examined in two waves that were approximately 10 years apart. Individuals in a significant romantic relationship and women had worse sleep quality than those in other marital status groups and men. Compared to individuals who remained married, individuals who remained divorced or widowed or who became widowed had better sleep quality, whereas those who became divorced had worse sleep quality; individuals who transitioned into marriage had better sleep quality than those who remained divorced or widowed. Marital status and gender appear important for at least some indices of sleep quality, an important predictor of late-life health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalResearch on Aging
StateAccepted/In press - 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Psychology
  • Health(social science)
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


  • aging
  • gender
  • marital status
  • sleep quality


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