Parenthood, gender and sickness absence
It is well documented that women have generally higher morbidity rates than men. In line with this women are also more absent from work due to sickness. This paper considers one popular explanation of the morbidity difference in general and of the difference in sickness absence in particular, viz. that women to a greater extent than men are exposed to the 'double burden' of combining paid work with family obligations. We discuss theories of role overload and role conflict, which both assume that the combination of multiple roles may have negative health effects, as well theories of role enhancement, which assume positive health effects of multiple roles. Using two large Norwegian data sets, the relationship between the number of and the age of children on the one hand and sickness absence on the other is examined separately for men and women and for a number of theoretically interesting subpopulations of women defined in terms of marital status (also taking account of unmarried cohabitation), level of education, and working hours. Generally speaking the association between children and sickness absence is weak, particularly for married people of both genders. To the extent that married persons with children are more absent than married persons without children, this is largely due to respiratory conditions. The relationship between children and sickness absence is somewhat stronger for single, never married mothers, but not for single mothers who have been previously married or for women living in unmarried cohabitation. The findings thus provide little support for either role overload/conflict or role enhancement theories. The possibility that these effects are both present and counterbalancing each other or that they are confounded with uncontrolled selection effects can not, however, be ruled out.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Volume (Year): 50 (2000)
Issue (Month): 12 (June)
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/journaldescription.cws_home/315/description#description|
|Order Information:|| Postal: http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/supportfaq.cws_home/regional|
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:50:y:2000:i:12:p:1827-1842. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Shamier, Wendy)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.