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J Frailty Aging ; 12(1): 86-90, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1998054


BACKGROUND: Prolonged self-restraining behaviors induced by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic's containment measures can limit various positive health behaviors. OBJECTIVE: We examined the decline in going-out and certain other positive health behaviors and investigated the relationship between excessive decreases in going-out frequency and declining engagement in positive health behaviors among community-dwelling older adults during the self-restraint period. DESIGN: This study employed a cross-sectional survey design. SETTING: This study was conducted in Nishi Tokyo City, Tokyo, Japan. PARTICIPANTS: The participants were 294 respondents (150 women) aged 50 years and older who lived in public housing that were permitted to be surveyed during the self-restraint period. MEASUREMENTS: Their pre-pandemic going-out frequency around February 2020 and going-out frequency during the self-restraint period starting in April 2020 were reported. We mainly assessed the existence of home health behaviors (i.e., exercise, in-person and phone conversations, and healthy diet). A self-report questionnaire was used to obtain data. RESULTS: Going-out frequency decreased in 41.2% of the 294 respondents owing to the government's request for self-restraint. In total, 13 individuals had been going out less than one time per week (housebound) before the request. Of the 281 people who were not housebound before the government's self-restraint request, 13.9% were newly housebound. Newly housebound individuals were 5.3 times less likely to exercise, had 2.1 times fewer social contacts, and 2.6 times less balanced or healthy diets than those who maintained their frequency of going out. CONCLUSIONS: Prolonged self-restraint due to the COVID-19 pandemic may lead to housebound status and poor health behaviors. Public health intervention is needed to prevent excessive self-restraint, along with new measures integrating information and communication technologies to enable older adults to live active lives.

COVID-19 , Aged , Female , Humans , Middle Aged , COVID-19/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Health Behavior , Independent Living , Pandemics , Japan
J Frailty Aging ; 11(2): 231-235, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1811431


Social detachment due to coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has caused a decline in physical activity, leading to sarcopenia and frailty in older adults. This study aimed to compare muscle mass, strength, and function values in older women before and after the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic (April-May 2020). Furthermore, changes in muscle measures across women who experienced different levels of impact on their social participation due to the COVID-19 pandemic were examined. Muscle mass (total, trunk, and appendicular muscle), grip strength, oral motor skills, social interactions (social network and participation), and social support were assessed in 46 Japanese community-dwelling older women (mean, 77.5 y; range 66-93 y) before and after the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. Trunk muscle mass significantly decreased after the first wave of the pandemic. When comparing changed values between the enhanced/maintained and reduced group during the pandemic, significant group difference was observed in trunk muscular mass, grip strength, and oral motor skills. Intriguingly, those who enhanced social participation had a positive change of grip strength values, showing that social participation might influence muscle function during the COVID-19 pandemic.

COVID-19 , Sarcopenia , Aged , COVID-19/epidemiology , Female , Hand Strength/physiology , Humans , Independent Living , Japan/epidemiology , Muscle Strength , Muscle, Skeletal/pathology , Pandemics , Sarcopenia/diagnosis , Sarcopenia/epidemiology