Health

'Happiness advantage' over age 39 is vanishing, study finds

Are you happy? If you're in your 30s or older, a new study has found that you're less likely to answer
Are you happy? If you're in your 30s or older, a new study has found that you're less likely to answer "yes" than your parents were.
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Are you happy? Very happy?

If you're in your 30s or older, a new study has found that you're less likely to answer "yes" than your parents were.

The findings, published online today in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science, come on the heels of another recent report. It found that death rates of middle-aged white Americans have been rising, largely due to suicide and substance abuse.

A professor at San Diego State who is the lead author of the happiness report says, "Age is supposed to bring happiness and contentment." And Jean Twenge says it's "somewhat shocking" that it isn't true anymore.

Starting with data in the early 1970s, she and her colleagues found that adults 30 and older used to be happier than younger adults and teens. But that "happiness advantage" has steadily declined as the older adults have expressed less satisfaction with their lives and the younger cohort has gotten a little happier.

Before you get too bummed out, consider another finding of the study: One in three of all American adults still report being "very happy."