Your browser doesn't support javascript.
Show: 20 | 50 | 100
Results 1 - 20 de 311
Filter
1.
BMC Psychiatry ; 23(1): 371, 2023 05 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-20236246

ABSTRACT

AIM: To investigate the relationship between social media use and loneliness and psychological wellbeing of youth in rural New South Wales. DESIGN: This was a web-based cross-sectional survey. METHODS: The survey consisted of 33 items including demography (12 items), participants' social media use (9 items), mood and anxiety (6 items), perceived loneliness (6 items), the impact of COVID-19 on social media usage or perceived loneliness (2 items). The participants' mood and anxiety were evaluated using the psychological distress tool (K6), while loneliness was measured using the De Jong Gierveld 6-item scale. Total loneliness and psychological distress scores were compared between demographic variables. RESULTS: A total of 47 participants, aged 16-24 years took part in the study. The majority were women (68%) and many had K6 score that was indicative of psychological distress (68%). About half of the participants indicated that Facebook (FB) was their most used social media platform and two in five participants were on social media within 10 min of waking up each day, about 30% spent more than 20 h per week on social media, and more than two-third sent private messages, images, or videos, multiple times a day. The mean loneliness score was 2.89 (range, 0 to 6), with 0 being 'not lonely' and 6 being 'intense social loneliness'. One-way ANOVA and χ2 test results showed that those who used FB most frequently had significantly higher mean scores for loneliness compared to those that used other social media platforms (p = 0.015). Linear regression analysis revealed that those who commonly used FB were more likely to report higher loneliness scores (coefficient = -1.45, 95%CI -2.63, -0.28, p = 0.017), while gender (p = 0.039), age (p = 0.048), household composition (p = 0.023), and education level (p = 0.014) were associated with severe psychological distress. CONCLUSIONS: The study found that social media usage, particularly FB, as measured by time used and active or passive engagement with the medium, was significantly linked to loneliness, with some impact on psychological distress. Social media use within ten minutes of waking increased the likelihood of psychological distress. However, neither loneliness nor psychological distress were associated with rurality among the rural youth in this study.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Social Media , Humans , Male , Female , Adolescent , Loneliness/psychology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Pilot Projects
2.
Front Public Health ; 11: 1158716, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-20231773

ABSTRACT

Objective: Social isolation and loneliness (SI/L) are considered critical public health issues. The primary objective of this scoping review is to document the experience of SI/L among older adults in Africa during the COVID-19 pandemic, given research gaps in this area. We identified the reasons for SI/L, the effects of SI/L, SI/L coping strategies, and research and policy gaps in SI/L experiences among older adults in Africa during COVID-19. Methods: Six databases (PubMed, Scopus, CINAHL, APA PsycINFO, Web of Science, and Ageline) were used to identify studies reporting the experiences of SI/L among older adults in Africa during the COVID-19 lockdown. We adopted the Joanna Briggs Institute (JBI) methodology and the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses extension for Scoping Reviews (PRISMA-ScR). Results: Social isolation and loneliness due to COVID-19 in Africa affected older adults' mental, communal, spiritual, financial, and physical health. The use of technology was vital, as was the role of social networks within the family, community, religious groups, and government. Methodological challenges include the risk of selective survival bias, sampling biases, and limited inductive value due to context. Also, lack of large-scale mixed methods longitudinal studies to capture the experiences of older adults during COVID-19. There were essential policy gaps for African mental health support services, media programs, and community care service integration targeting older adults in the era of the COVID-19 lockdown. Discussion: Like in other countries, COVID-19 lockdown policies and the lockdown restrictions primarily caused the experience of SI/L among older adults in Africa. In African countries, they resulted in a severance of older adults from the cultural structure of care for older adults and their familial support systems. Weak government intervention, personal situations, challenges regarding technology, and detachment from daily activities, disproportionately affected older adults in Africa.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Loneliness , Humans , Aged , Loneliness/psychology , Pandemics , COVID-19/epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control , Social Isolation/psychology , Africa
3.
Age Ageing ; 52(6)2023 Jun 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-20238635

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: There is little research conducted to systematically synthesize the evidence on psychological interventions for social isolation and loneliness among older adults during medical pandemics. This systematic review aims to address this information gap and provides guidance for planning and implementing interventions to prevent and reduce loneliness and social isolation for older adults, especially during medical pandemics. METHODS: Four electronic databases (EMBASE, PsychoInfo, Medline and Web of Science) and grey literature from 1 January 2000 to 13 September 2022 were searched for eligible studies on loneliness and social isolation. Data extraction and methodological quality assessment on key study characteristics were conducted independently by two researchers. Both qualitative synthesis and meta-analysis were used. RESULTS: The initial search yielded 3,116 titles. Of the 215 full texts reviewed, 12 intervention articles targeting loneliness during the COVID-19 pandemic met the inclusion criteria. No studies were found concerning intervention with respect to social isolation. Overall, interventions targeting social skills and the elimination of negativities effectively alleviated the feelings of loneliness in the older population. However, they had only short-term effects. CONCLUSION: This review systematically summarised the key characteristics and the effectiveness of existing interventions addressing loneliness in older adults during the COVID-19 pandemic. Future interventions should focus on social skills and eliminating negativities and be tailored to the needs and characteristics of older people. Repeated larger-scale randomized controlled trials and long-term effectiveness evaluations on this topic are warranted.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Loneliness , Humans , Aged , Loneliness/psychology , Pandemics , Psychosocial Intervention , COVID-19/epidemiology , Social Isolation/psychology
4.
JBI Evid Synth ; 21(5): 1043-1050, 2023 05 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2328104

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: The objective of this mixed methods review is to examine the effectiveness and experience of social phone programs on loneliness and/or mood in community-dwelling older adults. INTRODUCTION: There is a large and growing older adult population that is burdened with loneliness. Loneliness affects both physical and mental health, and it is, therefore, imperative to examine ways of mitigating experiences of loneliness. Social phone programs are being offered through multiple organizations as a way of increasing socialization and decreasing loneliness in older adults. There is a need to examine existing data on social phone programs to determine their effectiveness and optimize their implementation. INCLUSION CRITERIA: Included studies will be original qualitative, quantitative, or mixed methods research, along with gray literature, examining the use of social phone programs to address loneliness and/or mood in older adults. METHODS: A convergent segregated mixed methods approach will be used, in line with the JBI methodology for mixed methods reviews. Articles will be searched in selected databases, sources of clinical trials, and gray literature. No limits have been set for language or date of publication. Two team members will select studies through title and abstract screening and then full-text screening. Critical appraisal will be performed in accordance with the standard JBI critical assessment tools, although no articles will be excluded based on this appraisal. Quantitative articles will be synthesized using meta-analysis, while a process of meta-aggregation will be used for qualitative articles. The findings will be integrated into a final report. SYSTEMATIC REVIEW REGISTRATION NUMBER: PROSPERO CRD42022335119.


Subject(s)
Loneliness , Mental Health , Humans , Aged , Loneliness/psychology , Qualitative Research , Meta-Analysis as Topic
5.
J Affect Disord ; 337: 86-93, 2023 09 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2324536

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic significantly increased depression prevalence in general population. However, the relationship between persistent dysfunctional thinking associated with COVID-19 (perseverative-cognition) and depression, and its potential moderators are understudied. We aimed to examine the association between COVID-19 perseverative-cognition and depression, and the moderating effect of potential risk and protective factors on this association in general public during the peak of fifth COVID-19 wave in Hong Kong. METHODS: This survey recruited 14,269 community-dwelling adults between March 15-April 3, 2022 to investigate association between COVID-19 perseverative-cognition and depression, and the moderating effect of resilience, loneliness and three coping strategies (including emotion-focused, problem-focused and avoidant coping) on this association, using hierarchical regression models and simple slope analyses. COVID-19 perseverative cognition was assessed by the Obsession with COVID-19 Scale (OCS) and depressive symptoms were measured by the Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9). RESULTS: Perseverative-cognition was positively associated with depression severity. Resilience, loneliness and three coping strategies moderated the association between perseverative-cognition and depression. Specifically, greater resilience and emotion-focused coping ameliorated the association between perseverative-cognition and depression, while higher levels of loneliness, avoidant and problem-focused coping accentuated such association. LIMITATIONS: Cross-sectional design precluded establishing causality among variables. CONCLUSION: This study affirms that COVID-19 perseverative-cognition is significantly related to depression. Our findings indicate the potential critical role of enhanced personal resilience and social support, and adoption of emotion-focused coping in mitigating negative effect of COVID-19 related maladaptive thinking on depression severity, thereby facilitating development of targeted strategies to reduce psychological distress amidst the prolonged pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Loneliness , Adult , Humans , Loneliness/psychology , Depression/epidemiology , Depression/psychology , Hong Kong/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Pandemics , COVID-19/epidemiology , Adaptation, Psychological , Cognition
6.
J Affect Disord ; 335: 377-382, 2023 08 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2324441

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Shanghai undergone COVID-19 lockdown for 2 months in 2022, affecting >25 million population. We aim to find changes in mental health during Shanghai lockdown and if mental health was associated with Shanghai lockdown, loneliness, and perceived stress. METHODS: We conducted two cross-sectional online surveys in China, which were before and at the end of Shanghai lockdown (survey 1 in January 2022, N = 1123; survey 2 in June 2022, N = 2139). Participants reported mental health, loneliness, and perceived stress through the 12-item General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12), the short-form UCLA Loneliness Scale (ULS-8), and the 10-item Perceived Stress Scale (PSS-10). We compared data between survey 1 and 2. We ran a multiple linear regression model to investigate the impact of Shanghai lockdown, loneliness and perceived stress on mental health. RESULTS: There's an increase in the proportion of lonely people during Shanghai lockdown (49.77 % to 65.26 %). During Shanghai lockdown, the proportion of lonely people (68.97 % VS. 61.35 %, p < 0.001) and risk for mental health conditions (50.50 % VS. 43.27 %, p < 0.001) were higher among residents in Shanghai than outside Shanghai. Shanghai lockdown (b = 0.556, p = 0.02), higher ULS-8 (b = 0.284, p < 0.001) and higher PSS-10 (b = 0.365, p < 0.001) were associated with higher GHQ-12. LIMITATIONS: Participants reported their mental health status during Shanghai lockdown retrospectively. CONCLUSION: Shanghai lockdown had psychological impacts not only on residents in Shanghai but also outside Shanghai. Addressing loneliness and perceived stress accommodated to the lockdown situation should be considered.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Loneliness , Humans , Loneliness/psychology , Mental Health , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/psychology , SARS-CoV-2 , Cross-Sectional Studies , Retrospective Studies , China/epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control , Stress, Psychological/epidemiology
7.
Perspect Biol Med ; 65(1): 143-156, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2319190

ABSTRACT

Preventing and reducing loneliness is crucial to well-being and good health. While long thought to be a problem specific to the elderly or infirm, over the past decade the prevalence of loneliness across age cohorts has become increasingly apparent, and calls for a systematic public health approach to the problem have grown louder. This essay uses Vivek Murthy's Together: The Healing Power of Human Connection in a Sometimes Lonely World (2020) as a point of departure to explore the value of human connection in general-and friendship in particular-as a means to both abating the pernicious individual and societal impact of loneliness and building a foundation for a renewal of the common good. Friendship as a form of human connection is then applied to understanding and addressing the overlapping mental health challenges of American college students and resettled refugee youth.


Subject(s)
Friends , Hope , Loneliness , Mental Health , Adolescent , Aged , Friends/psychology , Humans , Loneliness/psychology , Public Health , United States , Young Adult
8.
Eur Psychiatry ; 63(1): e61, 2020 05 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2313894

ABSTRACT

The current pandemic has forced many people into self-isolation and to practice social distancing. When people are physically isolated and distant from each other, technology may play a fundamental role by enabling social connection and reducing feelings of loneliness caused by this prolonged social isolation. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, many mental health services worldwide have had to shift their routine face-to-face outpatient appointments to remote telepsychiatry encounters. The increased pressure on mental health services highlights the importance of community-led health-promotion interventions, which can contribute to preventing mental illness or their relapses, and to reduce the burden on health services. Patients with psychosis are particularly socially isolated, have sedentary lifestyles, and commonly face stigma and discrimination from the general population. At the same time, patients with psychosis value technology, are interested in, use and own smart-phones to digitally connect, and are satisfied with their use. Thus, among psychosocial interventions, a helpful resource may be "Phone Pal," a complex intervention which facilitates remote communication between volunteers and socially isolated patients with psychosis through different smart-phone tools. While "Phone Pal" has been originally developed for people with psychosis, it may also be useful to the wider population, helping to overcome the social isolation caused by physical distancing, particularly in these times of widespread isolation. "Phone Pal" may be a potential public health resource for society, providing important support to those that may need it the most, and possibly benefit most from it.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Loneliness/psychology , Mental Health Services , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Psychotic Disorders/psychology , Smartphone , Social Isolation/psychology , Telemedicine/methods , COVID-19 , Communication , Delivery of Health Care , Humans , Pandemics , Social Stigma , Telemedicine/instrumentation
9.
BMJ Open ; 13(5): e063363, 2023 05 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2319714

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: We aim to reveal how loneliness relates to suicidal ideation following the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. DESIGN: Cross-sectional online survey. SETTING: Community cohort study in Japan. PARTICIPANTS: The second wave of a large web-based survey, Japan COVID-19 and Society Internet Survey, was conducted in February 2021, and we analysed the data of 6436 men and 5380 women who were aged 20-59 years. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: The prevalence ratios (PRs) of suicidal ideation due to loneliness, depression, social isolation and decline in income during the pandemic and other sociodemographic and economic information were adjusted in the analysis. STATISTICAL METHODS: Estimations were conducted by separating a male and female sample. The survey weight (inverse probability weighting) was applied for analyses, and a Poisson regression model was used with all the potential confounders adjected. RESULTS: Overall, 15.1% of male and 16.3% of female participants were found to have had suicidal ideation during the COVID-19 pandemic. Among them, 23% of male and 20% of female participants experienced suicidal ideation for the first time. The results of the Poisson regression suggested that those who were feeling lonely had higher PRs for suicidal ideation (4.83 for men (95% CI, 3.87 to 6.16) and 6.19 for women (95% CI, 4.77 to 8.45)). The relationship between loneliness and suicidal ideation remained robust even after adjusting for depression, although there were declines in PRs. Additionally, the results showed that those who were lonely, and continued to feel lonely during the pandemic, had the highest PRs of suicidal ideation. CONCLUSION: Loneliness had both direct and indirect effects on suicidal ideation mediated through depression. Those who felt lonelier during the pandemic had the highest risk of suicidal ideation. It is necessary to adopt national measures focused on providing psychological support to people who feel lonely to prevent them from taking their own lives.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Suicidal Ideation , Humans , Male , Female , Loneliness/psychology , Pandemics , Cross-Sectional Studies , Cohort Studies , Japan/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Risk Factors
10.
J Affect Disord ; 334: 43-49, 2023 08 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2311986

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: We aimed to characterize the prevalence of social disconnection and thoughts of suicide among older adults in the United States, and examine the association between them in a large naturalistic study. METHODS: We analyzed data from 6 waves of a fifty-state non-probability survey among US adults conducted between February and December 2021. The internet-based survey collected the PHQ-9, as well as multiple measures of social connectedness. We applied multiple logistic regression to analyze the association between presence of thoughts of suicide and social disconnection. Exploratory analysis, using generalized random forests, examined heterogeneity of effects across sociodemographic groups. RESULTS: Of 16,164 survey respondents age 65 and older, mean age was 70.9 (SD 5.0); the cohort was 61.4 % female and 29.6 % male; 2.0 % Asian, 6.7 % Black, 2.2 % Hispanic, and 86.8 % White. A total of 1144 (7.1 %) reported thoughts of suicide at least several days in the prior 2 week period. In models adjusted for sociodemographic features, households with 3 or more additional members (adjusted OR 1.73, 95 % CI 1.28-2.33) and lack of social supports, particularly emotional supports (adjusted OR 2.60, 95 % CI 2.09-3.23), were independently associated with greater likelihood of reporting such thoughts, as was greater reported loneliness (adjusted OR 1.75, 95 % CI 1.64-1.87). The effects of emotional support varied significantly across sociodemographic groups. CONCLUSIONS: Thoughts of suicide are common among older adults in the US, and associated with lack of social support, but not with living alone. TRIAL REGISTRATION: NA.


Subject(s)
Social Isolation , Suicidal Ideation , Suicide , Aged , Female , Humans , Male , Loneliness/psychology , Social Isolation/psychology , Suicide/psychology , United States/epidemiology
11.
Asia Pac J Public Health ; 34(5): 565-568, 2022 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2310057

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has reduced opportunities for small talk. As small talk involves socializing, such deprivation can be stressful. This study examined the association between the change in the frequency of small talk from before to during the pandemic and the mental health of middle-aged and older people. We obtained data from web-based longitudinal surveys for members of a Japanese social networking service. People who felt their small talk frequency decreased during the pandemic compared with the prepandemic period had lower psychological well-being and greater loneliness than those who did not. Our study quantitatively revealed the importance of small talk during the pandemic in maintaining people's mental health.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pandemics , Aged , COVID-19/epidemiology , Humans , Japan/epidemiology , Loneliness/psychology , Longitudinal Studies , Mental Health , Middle Aged
12.
Front Public Health ; 10: 1067038, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2311580

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic is causing an epidemic of loneliness. Previous studies have shown the differences in positive and negative experiences of lonely and non-lonely people in a non-pandemic setting. However, it is unclear how the drastic alteration of the COVID-19 pandemic may influence peoples' reactions and beliefs, especially among those who feel lonely. Our study aims to examine the positive and negative experiences among lonely and non-lonely people. We undertook a cross-sectional online survey of the general population in Germany (N = 1,758) from May 2020 to May 2022. We assessed their feelings of loneliness with the short eight-item UCLA Loneliness Scale (ULS-8), their positive and negative experience of living in the COVID-19 pandemic as well as their psychological distress regarding the pandemic with the COVID-19 Peritraumatic Distress Index (CPDI). We found lonely individuals (ULS-8 score ≥ 16) reported fewer positive experiences of living in the COVID-19 pandemic, for example, less time with loved ones [z (1, 756) = -2.5, p = 0.012] and less sense of togetherness [z (1, 756) = -2.39, p = 0.017] as compared to non-lonely individuals. Meanwhile, they experienced more negative experiences, for example, worry and fear [z (1, 756) = 6.31, p < 0.001] compared with non-lonely individuals. Interestingly, lonely people were less likely to view the pandemic as a conspiracy than non-lonely people were [z (1, 756) = -3.35, p < 0.001]. Our results may give insight into attribution bias and the negative affect of lonely people during the COVID-19 pandemic as well as highlight the experience of non-lonely people and raise the question of differences in conspiracy beliefs. For pandemic preparedness and response, decision-makers may focus on interventions to foster social cohesion, empower people, build resilience, and most importantly provide timely social care.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Loneliness , Humans , Loneliness/psychology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Pandemics , Cross-Sectional Studies , Emotions
14.
Cyberpsychol Behav Soc Netw ; 26(5): 346-356, 2023 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2291807

ABSTRACT

Intensified preventive measures during the COVID-19 pandemic, such as lockdown and social distancing, heavily increased the perception of social isolation (i.e., a discrepancy between one's social needs and the provisions of the social environment) among young adults. Social isolation is closely associated with situational loneliness (i.e., loneliness emerging from environmental change), a risk factor for depressive symptoms. Prior research suggested vulnerable young adults are likely to seek support from an online social platform such as Reddit, a perceived comfortable environment for lonely individuals to seek mental health help through anonymous communication with a broad social network. Therefore, this study aims to identify and analyze depression-related dialogues on loneliness subreddits during the COVID-19 outbreak, with the implications on depression-related infoveillance during the pandemic. Our study utilized logistic regression and topic modeling to classify and examine depression-related discussions on loneliness subreddits before and during the pandemic. Our results showed significant increases in the volume of depression-related discussions (i.e., topics related to mental health, social interaction, family, and emotion) where challenges were reported during the pandemic. We also found a switch in dominant topics emerging from depression-related discussions on loneliness subreddits, from dating (prepandemic) to online interaction and community (pandemic), suggesting the increased expressions or need of online social support during the pandemic. The current findings suggest the potential of social media to serve as a window for monitoring public mental health. Our future study will clinically validate the current approach, which has implications for designing a surveillance system during the crisis.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Social Media , Young Adult , Humans , COVID-19/psychology , Pandemics , Mental Health , SARS-CoV-2 , Communicable Disease Control , Loneliness/psychology
15.
Psychogeriatrics ; 23(4): 561-570, 2023 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2306116

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Social distancing and 'stay-at-home' orders are essential to contain the coronavirus outbreak; however, it has affected older adults very negatively psychosocially. The present study explored the impact of a videoconferencing-implemented program on older adults' psychosocial health during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: We carried out this experimental research with pretest-posttest and control groups between November 02 to December 26, 2020 on individuals aged 60 years and over who were enrolled at Fethiye Refreshment University (60+ FRU). While the intervention group consisted of 40 people, we recruited 52 participants in the control group. Unlike the control group, the intervention group participated in a structured videoconferencing program held there days a week for 8 weeks. We collected the data using the Fear of COVID-19 Scale (FCV-19S), the Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support (MSPS), the Depression Anxiety Stress Scale (DASS-21), and the Loneliness Scale for Elderly (LSE). The data were then analysed on the SPSS 22.0 program. RESULTS: The participants had a mean age of 66.13 ± 5.13 years; 65.2% were females, 58.7% were married, 55.4% held a university degree and 93.5% had a regular income. Following the intervention, we found the experimental group to have significantly a lower posttest FCV-19S score (p < 0.05) and a higher posttest MSPS score than the control group (p < 0.05). Besides, the experimental group had significantly lower posttest scores on the DASS-21 and the anxiety and stress subscales than the control group (p < 0.05). Moreover, the posttest score of the experiential group on the emotional loneliness subscale (LSE) was found to be significantly lower than that of the control group (p < 0.05); nevertheless, we could not conclude significant differences between the groups' pretest and posttest LSE scores and their scores on the other LSE subscales (p > 0.05). CONCLUSION: Overall, the videoconferencing program was found to be efficient in providing older adults with psychosocial support amid social isolation.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Aged , Female , Humans , Middle Aged , Male , Pandemics , Social Isolation/psychology , Loneliness/psychology , Videoconferencing
16.
J Med Internet Res ; 25: e46537, 2023 05 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2298564

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Social loneliness is a prevalent issue in industrialized countries that can lead to adverse health outcomes, including a 26% increased risk of premature mortality, coronary heart disease, stroke, depression, cognitive impairment, and Alzheimer disease. The United Kingdom has implemented a strategy to address loneliness, including social prescribing-a health care model where physicians prescribe nonpharmacological interventions to tackle social loneliness. However, there is a need for evidence-based plans for global social prescribing dissemination. OBJECTIVE: This study aims to identify global trends in social prescribing from 2018. To this end, we intend to collect and analyze words related to social prescribing worldwide and evaluate various trends of related words by classifying the core areas of social prescribing. METHODS: Google's searchable data were collected to analyze web-based data related to social prescribing. With the help of web crawling, 3796 news items were collected for the 5-year period from 2018 to 2022. Key topics were selected to identify keywords for each major topic related to social prescribing. The topics were grouped into 4 categories, namely Healthy, Program, Governance, and Target, and keywords for each topic were selected thereafter. Text mining was used to determine the importance of words collected from new data. RESULTS: Word clouds were generated for words related to social prescribing, which collected 3796 words from Google News databases, including 128 in 2018, 432 in 2019, 566 in 2020, 748 in 2021, and 1922 in 2022, increasing nearly 15-fold between 2018 and 2022 (5 years). Words such as health, prescribing, and GPs (general practitioners) were the highest in terms of frequency in the list for all the years. Between 2020 and 2021, COVID, gardening, and UK were found to be highly related words. In 2022, NHS (National Health Service) and UK ranked high. This dissertation examines social prescribing-related term frequency and classification (2018-2022) in Healthy, Program, Governance, and Target categories. Key findings include increased "Healthy" terms from 2020, "gardening" prominence in "Program," "community" growth across categories, and "Target" term spikes in 2021. CONCLUSIONS: This study's discussion highlights four key aspects: (1) the "Healthy" category trends emphasize mental health, cancer, and sleep; (2) the "Program" category prioritizes gardening, community, home-schooling, and digital initiatives; (3) "Governance" underscores the significance of community resources in social prescribing implementation; and (4) "Target" focuses on 4 main groups: individuals with long-term conditions, low-level mental health issues, social isolation, or complex social needs impacting well-being. Social prescribing is gaining global acceptance and is becoming a global national policy, as the world is witnessing a sharp rise in the aging population, noncontagious diseases, and mental health problems. A successful and sustainable model of social prescribing can be achieved by introducing social prescribing schemes based on the understanding of roles and the impact of multisectoral partnerships.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Humans , Aged , State Medicine , Loneliness/psychology , Social Isolation/psychology , Internet
17.
BMJ Open ; 13(4): e064033, 2023 04 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2298526

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To examine the level of loneliness experienced during the COVID-19 pandemic in Denmark and to identify associated behavioural patterns and demographic factors. DESIGN: Cross-sectional cohort study. SETTING: Includes Danish active and former blood donors. PARTICIPANTS: A questionnaire was sent to 124 307 active and former blood donors, of these a total of 50 968 participants completed the study questionnaire (response rate=41%). PRIMARY AND SECONDARY OUTCOME MEASURES: Subjective experience of loneliness was measured using the 3-item University of California, Los Angeles Loneliness Scale (UCLA-3). Besides the UCLA-3, the respondents answered items on sociodemographic and economic characteristics, items on precautionary measures taken to avoid COVID-19 infection as well as on COVID-19 anxiety. RESULTS: The participants indicated their experienced level of loneliness both before and during the pandemic. Comparing the two reports yielded a mean increase in loneliness scores of 14.1% (p<0.001). Exploratory factor analysis identified the factor well-being, which comprised three questionnaire items related to emotional heath, physical health and happiness. A high score on the factor well-being was associated with reduced levels of loneliness (coefficient=-0.47, 95% CI -0.49 to -0.46)). Furthermore, women were more likely than men to have experienced increased levels of loneliness during the pandemic (coefficient=0.27, 95% CI 0.25 to 0.29). Furthermore, a negative correlation between higher age and change in loneliness score was observed. CONCLUSIONS: The findings document an increase in the level of experienced loneliness during the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly affecting individuals with low well-being, women and younger individuals.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Loneliness , Male , Humans , Adult , Female , Loneliness/psychology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Pandemics , Depression/psychology
19.
Health Promot Chronic Dis Prev Can ; 43(4): 171-181, 2023 Apr.
Article in English, French | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2301242

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Social isolation and loneliness are associated with poorer mental health among older adults. However, less is known about how these experiences are independently associated with positive mental health (PMH) during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: We analyzed data from the 2020 and 2021 cycles of the Survey on COVID-19 and Mental Health to provide estimates of social isolation (i.e. living alone), loneliness and PMH outcomes (i.e. high self-rated mental health, high community belonging, mean life satisfaction) in the overall older adult population (i.e. 65+ years) and across sociodemographic groups. We also conducted logistic and linear regressions to separately and simultaneously examine how social isolation and loneliness are associated with PMH. RESULTS: Nearly 3 in 10 older adults reported living alone, and over a third reported feelings of loneliness due to the pandemic. When examined separately, living alone and loneliness were each associated with lower PMH. When assessed simultaneously, loneliness remained a significant independent factor associated with all three PMH outcomes (overall and across all sociodemographic groups), but living alone was only a significant factor for high community belonging in the overall population, for males and for those aged 65 to 74 years. CONCLUSION: Overall, social isolation and loneliness were associated with poorer wellbeing among older adults in Canada during the pandemic. Loneliness remained a significant factor related to all PMH outcomes after adjusting for social isolation, but not vice versa. The findings highlight the need to appropriately identify and support lonely older adults during (and beyond) the pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Loneliness , Male , Humans , Aged , Loneliness/psychology , Pandemics , COVID-19/epidemiology , Mental Health , Social Isolation/psychology , Canada/epidemiology
20.
PLoS One ; 18(4): e0284101, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2301135

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected us in numerous ways and may consequently impact our relationships with pet dogs and cats. We conducted a longitudinal survey to examine the temporal patterns of owner-pet relationship, stress, and loneliness during four phases of the pandemic: 1) pre-pandemic (February 2020), 2) lockdown (April to June 2020), 3) reopening (September to December 2020), and 4) recovery (January 2021 to December 2021). We also investigated the effect of pet ownership on stress and loneliness, by considering a set of a priori causal assumptions. In addition, we hypothesized that the differences in the levels of stress and loneliness between dog and cat ownerships were mediated by the owner-pet relationship. A total of 4,237 participants (657 non-pet owners, 1,761 dog owners, and 1,819 cat owners) completed between one and six surveys. Overall, the closeness in the relationship between owners and their pets increased with time during the study period. We also observed that dog owners consistently showed larger decreases in the levels of stress and loneliness than cat and non-pet owners. However, after adjusting for confounders, the findings did not support a mitigating effect of pet ownership. Pet ownership did not alleviate stress, social loneliness resulting from a lack of friendships or workplace relationships, or emotional loneliness due to deficiencies in family relationships. Pet owners, however, reported a lower degree of emotional loneliness caused by deficits in romantic relationships than non-pet owners. Our results also indicated that the differences in stress and loneliness levels between dog and cat ownerships were partially explained by the owner-pet relationship, and once this was accounted for, the differences between them reduced. In summary, this study highlights the dynamic effects of COVID-19 on owner-pet relationship and mental health. It also shows the complexity of the association between pet ownership and mental health, partially mediated by owner-pet relationships.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Cat Diseases , Dog Diseases , Animals , Humans , Dogs , Cats , Mental Health , Loneliness/psychology , Pets/psychology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Pandemics , Ownership , Communicable Disease Control , Surveys and Questionnaires , Longitudinal Studies
SELECTION OF CITATIONS
SEARCH DETAIL