Anxiety and Depression among Senior Citizens
Background: Senior citizens are at risk of developing mental health problems and the most common are depression and anxiety, which are important public health problems. This study aimed to find out the mental health status and factors associated with it among senior citizens.
Methods: The study design was a cross sectional survey. Among the senior citizens residing in Tansen Municipality, Palpa, 245 participants were selected randomly from the list of senior citizens, enrolled in senior citizen allowance scheme. Data was collected by doing face to face interviews using Geriatric Depression Scale -15 and Geriatric Anxiety Scale-10. The data was entered in Epi Data 3.1 and transferred to SPSS version 16 program for analysis.
Results: The mean age of the participants was 78.33 years. Most of the participants were female (52.2%), 95.5% were physically independent and 68.2% had some physical problems. Regarding depression, 30.6% and 2% of the participants had the symptoms suggestive and indicative of depression respectively. Whereas, 8.2% had severe symptoms of anxiety. The anxiety and depression were correlated (rs = 0.615) and were associated with companion of living, education status, physical dependency, and comorbid physical problem.
Conclusions: Senior citizens have symptoms of depression and anxiety. Having physical health problems, being physically dependent are likely to result in poor mental health in elderly. There is a need to recognize the mental health problem of elderly in community settings.
Keywords: Anxiety; depression; elderly; mental health status; senior citizens
Copyright (c) 2021 Muna Sharma, Tilarupa Bhattarai , Prafulla Sharma
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