Relationship between physical activity level and depression of elderly people living alone. - GreenMedInfo Summary
Relationship between Physical Activity Level and Depression of Elderly People Living Alone.
Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2019 Oct 22 ;16(20). Epub 2019 Oct 22. PMID: 31652619
BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Only a few studies analyzed the physical activity level of elderly people living alone in local communities and evaluated the relationship between it and mental health. The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between regular physical activity and depression in the elderly living alone and to provide basic data for the prevention of depression in the elderly.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: We analyzed 256 elderly people living alone aged 65 years or older who completed the 2014 Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. Depression was defined as a score of 10 or higher using Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9). This study investigated walking per week, days of muscular strength exercise performance in the past 1 week, days of flexibility exercise in the past 1 week, mean hours in a sitting position per day, the numbers of days and hours conducting a high intensity physical activity in the past 1 week, and numbers of days and hours conducting a medium intensity physical activity in the past 1 week to define physical activity. Our study presented prevalence odds ratios (pOR) and 95% confidence interval (CI) by using complex sample logistic regression analysis in order to identify the relationship between physical activity and depression.
RESULTS: The results of complex sample logistic regression analysis showed that flexibility exercise was significantly related to depression (p<0.05). On the other hand, the mean hours in a sitting position per day, aerobic physical activity, walking, and muscular strength exercise were not significantly related to geriatric depression.
CONCLUSIONS: The results of our study implied that persistent flexibility exercise might be more effective to maintain a healthy mental status than muscular strength exercise. A longitudinal study is required to prove the causal relationship between physical activity and depression in the old age.