Household disrepair and the mental health of low-income urban women

Amy M. Burdette, Terrence Hill, Lauren Hale

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We employ longitudinal survey data from the Welfare, Children, and Families project (1999, 2001) to examine the effects of household disrepair (e.g., living with leaky structures, busted plumbing, broken windows, and pests) on psychological distress among low-income urban women with children. Building on previous research, we adjust for related housing concepts, neighborhood disorder, financial hardship, and a host of relevant background factors. We also formally test the mediating influences of social support and self-esteem. Our cross-sectional analysis indicated that household disrepair is positively associated with recent symptoms of psychological distress. Our longitudinal change score analysis demonstrates two important patterns. First, women living with household disrepair at baseline are not necessarily vulnerable to increases in symptoms of psychological distress over the 2-year study period. Second, women who report an increase in disrepair over the study period are also likely to report a concurrent increase in symptoms of distress. Although social support and self-esteem favor mental health in our cross-sectional and longitudinal analyses, these psychosocial resources fail to mediate or explain the association between disrepair and distress.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)142-153
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Urban Health
Volume88
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2011
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Mental Health
low income
mental health
Psychology
Self Concept
Social Support
self-esteem
social support
Sanitary Engineering
Cross-Sectional Studies
family welfare
Child Welfare
child welfare
Longitudinal Studies
housing
Research
resources

Keywords

  • Housing
  • Mental health
  • Neighborhood

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health(social science)
  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Household disrepair and the mental health of low-income urban women. / Burdette, Amy M.; Hill, Terrence; Hale, Lauren.

In: Journal of Urban Health, Vol. 88, No. 1, 02.2011, p. 142-153.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Burdette, Amy M. ; Hill, Terrence ; Hale, Lauren. / Household disrepair and the mental health of low-income urban women. In: Journal of Urban Health. 2011 ; Vol. 88, No. 1. pp. 142-153.
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