The Association between Depression and Social Isolation among Older Adults

TitleThe Association between Depression and Social Isolation among Older Adults
Publication TypeThesis
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsGelgur, LA
Academic DepartmentFamily and Consumer Sciences
DegreeMaster of Science in Gerontology
Number of Pages50
UniversityCalifornia State University
Thesis Typephd
ISBN Number9780355650143
Keywordsdepression, Health and environmental sciences, Health and Retirement Study, Mental Health, Older Adults, social isolation, Social Sciences

The Health and Retirement Study (HRS) is a twenty-five-year longitudinal study that studies populations over the age of fifty. There is a lack of studies that examine depression and social isolation as comorbid conditions. The purpose of this study was to examine secondary data from the 2014 wave of the HRS regarding associations between depression, social isolation and demographic characteristics, including age (50–104 years), gender, and marital status. Self-reported data from 18,289 participants (10,703 females and 7,586 males) suggested a positive association between depression and social isolation ( r = .365, p < .001) in that as levels of depression increase so do feelings of social isolation. Significantly more females than males reported having depression. Those who were married reported less depression and social isolation. Younger ages experienced depression and older ages social isolation. Further research should explore solutions to decreasing depression and social isolation among older adults in the United States.


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Citation Key10290