Depressive Symptoms and Suicidal Ideation in Individuals Living Alone in South Korea

Kyoung Ae Kong, Young Eun Kim, Sunho Lim, Bo Young Kim, Ga Eun Kim, Soo In Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This study compared the prevalence of depressive symptoms and suicidal ideation in individuals living alone compared with those living with others and assessed the contribution of socio-demographic factors and physical health to these differences. We analyzed 2221 individuals living alone and 19,397 individuals living with others aged 20–80 years, drawn from the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey dataset in South Korea. The study group divided into three subgroups based on age to determine whether there were differences in mental health according to age. Depressive symptoms and suicidal ideation were evaluated by self-reported questionnaires. The sex-and age-adjusted prevalence rates of depressive symptoms and suicidal ideation were higher in those living alone than those living with others. The proportion of socio-eco-nomic status and physical health explaining the differences of depressive mood and suicidal ideation between the two groups was greater in the age group over 35 years old. Considering the difference in factors that explain depressive symptoms and suicidal ideation among individuals living alone in the age group over 35 years of age and younger groups under 34 years of age, policies should be developed that will address the mental health needs of each age group.

Original languageEnglish
Article number603
JournalDiagnostics
Volume12
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2022

Keywords

  • Depressive symptoms
  • Living alone
  • Living with others
  • Suicidal ideation

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