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Indian Journal of Forensic and Community Medicine

A cross sectional study on prevalence of depression and its socio-demographic correlates among elderly in rural India

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Author Details : Ramesh D. Pawar*, Kalpana M. Kale, Nandkeshav R Aswar, Shital Solanke

Volume : 5, Issue : 4, Year : 2018

Article Page : 210-214

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Introduction: India is presently undergoing demographic transition leading significant increase in elderly population. The advent of better health services and preventive care has raised life expectancy. Presently the population of elderly in India is 9.4% in 2017 which will rise to 19.1% in 2050. Elderly form a vulnerable group as they suffer from physical, psychological, economic, social and nutritional problems. These problems there by con-tribute to various disabilities. Prevalence of depression among elderly ranges from as low as 12.7% to as high as 60.0% from literature. The depression among the elderly often goes undetected and thus untreated which results in loneliness, social isolation, cognitive impairment, and decline in their ability to carry out the functional activities and thus compromises their quality of life. Determining the burden of depression among the elderly and to study various socio-demographic factors will facilitate formulating policies to plan better health care delivery services for them. Hence present study was planned with the objective to study the magnitude of depression and its socio demographic correlates among the elderly.
Material and Methods: Present study was a cross sectional study conducted in elderly (?60 Years) residing in the field practice area of Rural Health Training Centre of one of the Government Medical College. Sample size calculated for the study was 290 and simple random sampling method was used for the data collection. Measurement was done using WHO Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS) long form of 30 questions. Ethical approval was obtained from institutional ethical committee and consent was taken from participants. Data entry and analysis was done by using software Epi Info version 7.2.
Results: The Magnitude of Depression among elderly was found to be 57.66% (Mild Depression 23.91%, Moderate Depression 19.06% and Severe Depression 14.69%). The various factors associated with depression were, female sex, low Socio-economic status, and single/widowed/divorced, less physical activity, inadequate sleep and living alone.
Conclusions: The high prevalence of depression observed among the elderly population suggests there is need for improvement in policies and guidelines for early screening, treatment and counselling of elderly for timely detection and treatment of depression at community level. Formation of social groups at community level and more emphasis on improvement of quality of life of the elderly.

Keywords: Depression, Elderly, Factors affecting depression, Geriatric depression scale -30.

Doi : 10.18231/2394-6776.2018.0048

How to cite : Pawar R D, Kale K M, Aswar N R, Solanke S, A cross sectional study on prevalence of depression and its socio-demographic correlates among elderly in rural India. Indian J Forensic Community Med 2018;5(4):210-214

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