To save this undefined to your undefined account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your undefined account.
Find out more about saving content to .
To save this article to your Kindle, first ensure firstname.lastname@example.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about saving to your Kindle.
Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
Pandemics and their public health control measures have generally substantially increased the level of loneliness and social isolation in the general population. Because of the circumstances of aging, older adults are more likely to experience social isolation and loneliness during pandemics. However, no systematic review has been conducted or published on the prevalence of loneliness and/or social isolation among the older population. This systematic review and meta-analysis aims to provide up-to-date pooled estimates of the prevalence of social isolation and loneliness among older adults during the COVID-19 pandemic and other pandemics in the last two decades.
EMBASE, PsychoINFO, Medline, and Web of Science were searched for relevant studies from January 1, 2000 to November 31, 2021 published in a variety of languages. Only studies conducted during the COVID-19 pandemic were selected in the review.
A total of 30 studies including 28,050 participants met the inclusion criteria. Overall, the pooled period prevalence of loneliness among older adults was 28.6% (95% CI: 22.9–35.0%) and 31.2% for social isolation (95% CI: 20.2–44.9%). Prevalence estimates were significantly higher for those studies conducted post 3-month from the start of the COVID-19 pandemic compared to those conducted within the first 3 months of the pandemic.
This review identifies the need for good quality longitudinal studies to examine the long-term impact of pandemics on loneliness and social isolation among older populations. Health policymaking and healthcare systems should proactively address the rising demand for appropriate psychological services among older adults.
Exposures to adverse events are associated with impaired later-life psychological health. While these associations depend on the type of event, the manner in which associations for different event types depend on when they occur within the life course has received less attention. We investigated associations between counts of adverse events over the life course, and wellbeing and mental health outcomes in older people, according to their timing (age of occurrence), orientation (self or other) and, both their timing and orientation.
Linear and logistic random-effects models for repeated observations.
A total of 4,208 respondents aged >50 years with 22,146 observations across Waves 1–7 of the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing.
Cumulative adversity was measured by counts of 16 types of events occurring within four age ranges over the life course using retrospective life history data. These were categorized into other- (experienced through harms to others) and self-oriented events. Outcomes included CASP-12 (control, autonomy, self-realization, and pleasure), the eight-item Centre of Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale, and self-appraised subjective life satisfaction.
Additional adverse events were associated with lower CASP-12 and life satisfaction scores, and higher odds of probable depressive caseness. In childhood, other-oriented events had a larger negative association with later-life wellbeing than self-oriented events; the converse was found for events occurring in adulthood.
Events occurring at all life course stages were independently associated with both later-life wellbeing and depression in a cumulative fashion. Certain age ranges may represent sensitive periods for specific event types.
Indigenous Australians experience higher levels of psychological distress compared to the general population. Physical activity is a culturally acceptable approach, associated with reduction of depressive symptoms. The protective properties of physical activity for depressive symptoms are yet to be evaluated in older Indigenous Australians.
A two-phase study design comprised of a qualitative thematic analysis following a quantitative regression and moderation analysis.
Firstly, a total of 336 Indigenous Australians aged 60 years and over from five NSW areas participated in assessments on mental health, physical activity participation, and childhood trauma. Secondly, a focus group of seven Indigenous Australians was conducted to evaluate barriers and facilitators to physical activity.
Regression and moderation analyses examined links between depression, childhood trauma, and physical activity. Thematic analysis was conducted exploring facilitators and barriers to physical activity following the focus group.
Childhood trauma severity and intensity of physical activity predicted depressive symptoms. Physical activity did not affect the strength of the relationship between childhood trauma and depression. Family support and low impact activities facilitated commitment to physical activity. In contrast, poor mental health, trauma, and illness acted as barriers.
Physical activity is an appropriate approach for reducing depressive symptoms and integral in maintaining health and quality of life. While situational factors, health problems and trauma impact physical activity, accessing low-impact group activities with social support was identified to help navigate these barriers.