ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R

Advances in Psychological Science ›› 2021, Vol. 29 ›› Issue (1): 160-166.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2021.00160

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Childhood poverty and cognitive aging

ZHAO Xin(), ZHENG Qiaoping   

  1. Key Laboratory of Behavioral and Mental Health of Gansu Province; School of Psychology, Northwest Normal University, Lanzhou 730070, China
  • Received:2020-07-05 Online:2021-01-15 Published:2020-11-23
  • Contact: ZHAO Xin


How the childhood poverty influences cognitive aging remains controversial. Some studies have shown that childhood poverty can accelerate individual cognitive aging, but other studies have found that childhood poverty can delay individual cognitive aging, which is related to the moderation of social mobility. For poor individuals in childhood, low stability or the downward mobility of socioeconomic status will make the negative effects of adversity accumulate continuously, thus accelerating the cognitive aging of individuals. However, poor childhood individuals with high psychological resilience may promote upward socioeconomic mobility, which will increase the individual's cognitive reserve and enhance specific cognitive abilities, thus delaying cognitive aging. Future research in this field should explore the relationship between childhood subjective poverty and cognitive aging and the influence of childhood poverty on the aging of different cognitive abilities. It should also focus on the survivor bias effect in studies on the relationship between childhood poverty and cognitive aging in later life.

Key words: socioeconomic status, poverty, cognitive aging, social mobility, cognitive reserve

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