Prevalence and associated risk factors for depressive symptoms among the elderly in India: evidence from the longitudinal ageing study in India (LASI)

Puja Goswami, International institute
Palak Sharma, International Institute for Population Sciences (IIPS)

Ageing adds several socioeconomic and health-related risk factors that can trigger depressive symptoms. Older adults experience additional life stressors induced by reduced mobility, chronic disease, frailty, drop in socioeconomic status, bereavement and isolation. They are also more prone to elder abuse which can cause long-lasting psychological distress. Due to the lack of awareness and stigma associated with depression, it is either neglected or overlooked as a normal ageing phenomenon. Logistic regression and decomposition models are used to analyse data from the longitudinal ageing study in India to explore the association of risk factors and depressive symptoms. Socioeconomic groups are further studied to measure the prevalence of depressive symptoms and filter out the vulnerable groups. The study suggests depressive symptoms can be curtailed by encouraging social interaction, awareness, providing security and freedom, social support but most importantly by designing comprehensive and sustainable geriatric healthcare policies and programmes.

Keywords: Longitudinal studies, Population ageing, Inequality, Health and morbidity

See extended abstract.

  Presented in Session P19.