Sexual orientation and self-rated health: the role of social capital, offence, threat of violence, and violence.

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Abstract

Objective: To study the association between sexual orientation and self-rated health, including trust, offence, threat of violence, and violence. Design/setting/participants/measurement: The 2008 Public Health Survey in Skåne is a cross-sectional postal questionnaire study. A total of 28,198 persons aged 18-80 years responded (55%). Logistic regressions analysed the association between sexual orientation and self-rated health. Results: 27.4% of all men and 30.0% of all women rated their health as poor. Poor self-rated health was significantly more prevalent in higher age, among immigrants, people with lower education, low social support, low trust, experience of being offended, experience of threat of violence and violence, and bisexual and other orientation. Homosexual and bisexual men and women had higher age-adjusted odds ratios of having felt offended compared to heterosexual respondents. The odds ratios of low trust, threat of violence (men), and experience of violence (women) were significant for respondents with bisexual orientation but not for respondents with homosexual orientation. In the age-adjusted model, no significant association was observed between homosexual orientation and poor self-rated health among women. All other associations between sexual orientation and health were significant in the age-adjusted model but non-significant in the multiple models. Conclusions: Associations between sexual orientation and health disappear after multiple adjustments including trust and experience of offence, threat of violence, and violence. The study suggests that the group with bisexual orientation seems to be more exposed to low social capital (trust), threat of violence, and violence than the group with homosexual orientation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)508-515
JournalScandinavian Journal of Public Health
Volume41
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology

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