The relationship between spirituality and death fear in aging adults

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This study describes the relationship between spirituality and death fear in 54 older adults between the ages of 58 and 98 years (M = 76), residing in a nursing home, hospice, or community setting in North Central Florida. Participants were sorted into four groups based on their scores (high versus low) on spirituality and death fear scales. In-depth analyses of the semi-structured qualitative interviews with the individuals in each group revealed that expressions of death fear were more common in individuals with spiritual discontent as opposed to those with either spiritual contentment or disinterest irrespective of their level of spirituality. The results suggest that spiritual discontent is a greater detriment to dying in peace than spiritual disinterest.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)87-112
JournalCounselling and Spirituality
Volume30
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • death fear
  • older adults
  • spirituality
  • spiritual contentment
  • nursing home
  • hospice
  • dying

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