Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started
My Medicine

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Health & Balance

Font Size

For Happiness, Seek Family, Not Fortune

Study Shows Family Relationships Bring Greater Happiness Than High Income

Different Perspective on Happiness and Money

The study adds to a growing body of happiness research, but it is far from the last word on the topic.

In a paper presented in April at the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C., economists Betsey Stevenson, PhD, and Justin Wolfers, PhD, concluded that income does seem to be directly related to happiness, within societies and in personal terms.

Using polling data from both rich and poor countries, the researchers found personal satisfaction to be highest among people living in the richest countries. Within the countries, people with higher incomes tended to be happier than those with less money.

In the U.S., for example, 90% of people in households making at least $250,000 considered themselves "very happy," compared to just 42% of people in households with incomes below $30,000.

"We looked at 35 years' worth of data and found the relationship between income and happiness to be very strong," Stevenson tells WebMD.

The findings seem to contradict the idea that money is only related to happiness up to the point where basic needs are met.

The research by Stevenson and Wolfers shows that people living in households with annual incomes of $250,000 tended to report higher levels of personal satisfaction than people living in households with annual earnings of $120,000.

"We didn't look at the super-rich, so we can't really say if Bill Gates is that much happier than the rest of us," Stevenson says.

About 1% of American families have annual incomes of $250,000 or more, while just 5% earn $120,000 or more.

1 | 2

Today on WebMD

woman in yoga class
6 health benefits of yoga.
beautiful girl lying down of grass
10 relaxation techniques to try.
mature woman with glass of water
Do you really need to drink 8 glasses of water a day?
coffee beans in shape of mug
Get the facts.
Take your medication
Hand appearing to hold the sun
Hungover man
Welcome mat and wellington boots
Woman worn out on couch
Happy and sad faces
Fingertip with string tied in a bow
laughing family