Psychological Health Among Older Adults During and After Quarantine: A Multi-Method Study.

Durante A, Klompstra L, Cezón-Serrano N, Deka P, Arnal-Gómez A, Querol-Giner F, Marques-Sule E

West J Nurs Res - (-) 1939459231214603 [2023-11-19; online 2023-11-19]

Depression among older adults is a growing problem. With aging being a risk factor for COVID-19 infection, depression in this population may have been exacerbated. This study aimed to describe experiences and changes in depressive symptoms and well-being of older adults during and after the COVID-19 first wave in Spain. The study used a multi-method design. Participants self-reported depressive symptoms (Geriatric Depression Scale) and well-being (Cantril Ladder of Life). Participants were asked about changes in depressive symptoms or well-being during quarantine. If a change was perceived, they were asked to describe the change. In addition, the Patient Global Impression of Change scale was used. Both quantitative and qualitative analyses were performed on the data. 111 participants (mean age: 71±5 years; 76% women) completed the study. Sixty-three percent reported mild and 2% reported major depressive symptoms. Nearly half (47.7%) reported changes in depressive symptoms during the lockdown. While 37% reported feeling better during the lockdown, about 11% reported depressive symptoms were worse now compared with during the lockdown. 60% reported worsening well-being during the quarantining period. The qualitative analysis revealed 2 main themes: (1) psychological discomfort (mood deflection, fear/worries, and boredom/inactivity) and (2) social issues (inability to go out, missing family members and others). Worsening depressive symptoms and lowering of well-being were noticed in this sample of older adults during and post-COVID lockdowns. Evaluation of mental health in the primary care setting and providing referrals for mental health services is essential for older adults who experienced COVID-19-related lockdowns.

Category: Social Science & Humanities

Type: Journal article

PubMed 37981724

DOI 10.1177/01939459231214603

Crossref 10.1177/01939459231214603

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