Perception All of us have experienced being in a new place and feeling certain that we have been there before.
The odds ratio for loneliness in predicting depression at baseline and followup was 1. Logistic regression predicting depression at baseline and followup. Discussion In agreement with previous studies, we found that loneliness was by far a stronger contributor to mental health and functioning.
Our study suggests that while living alone contributed to poorer psychological well-being, it was mostly attributed to loneliness. Whether living alone or with others, elderly persons who were not lonely showed similarly fewest numbers of depressive symptoms. However, lonely elderly persons showed higher number of depressive symptoms if they were living alone than if they were living with others.
These findings help to explain the inconsistent findings reported in previous research on the effects of living alone on depression. Populations of older persons who live alone in different studies may vary in their proportions of those who felt lonely, depending on the ecological context of social support and cohesions.
In our study population, this proportion was about a quarter. For example, Mui [ 5 ] found that elderly Chinese immigrants in America living alone were more likely to be depressed, but the effect of loneliness was not examined in their study.
Living alone may predispose to more depression by engendering social isolation especially when social contacts are not maintained [ 28 ]. However, this is not invariably the case in all social contexts or communities.
It is interesting to note in this study of elderly Singaporeans that those who lived alone in fact reported significantly higher frequency of social contact than their counterparts who lived with others and there was little difference in the levels of social or productive activities between them.
This is because elderly who live alone are identified by the Ministry of Community Services for befriender and other social welfare services provided by local resident committees and voluntary organizations.
Elsewhere, elderly immigrants who live alone may experience stressors such as language and culture barriers that impede their participation in social activities, hence, intensifying feelings of social isolation and loneliness.
It is thus interesting to note that, given the traditional preference for Chinese elderly people to live with their adult children especially sons, living alone did not appear to have a profound effect on mental health and functioning as expected.
Most probably, the case is that given the same collectivist culture that emphases family togetherness, living alone may not greatly diminish the close knit of family members and their moral obligations for psychosocial support, even though nuclearization of families is on the increase.
In Singapore, public policy emphasis and tangible incentives to encourage nuclear families to live in close proximity to elderly parents living alone also help to alleviate the detrimental effects on their psychological and subjective well-being.
On the other hand, loneliness was found to have a much stronger impact on the psychological well-being of the elderly. The intrinsic emotional bonding between elderly parents and their adult children is more central than physical togetherness in determining mental well-being.
We further postulate that the differential effects between living alone and loneliness may lie in the subjective perception of their children as being filial in fulfilling the responsibilities of caring for their parents. Even with children living apart, some elderly may not perceive their needs as unmet by their children, and, hence, there is no negative impact on their well-being.
However, those elderly who felt that their children had failed to provide the desired and expected level of support, albeit living with them under the same roof, may be more likely to report poorer mental health and psychological well-being. The study has both strengths and limitations.
The population-based approach makes the results more widely generalizable.
However, special high-risk groups of frail elderly living alone need a separate and more detailed study. In the longitudinal analyses, because the selection characteristics of the participants in the followup interview was clearly biased towards better functioning individuals, the relationships of primary interest were likely to have been attenuated as a result.
Self-reported data are subjected to possible social desirability and recall bias, and solely relying on such responses might possibly exaggerate the relationships.
The construct of loneliness in this study is simple, and further studies may examine the multiple dimensions of loneliness and their effects on the mental health and functioning of elderly persons.Some Thoughts on the Format for a Psychological Report The following format is one that evolved over several years with input from a variety of psychologists.
Aug 28, · The only factor that did was the strength of the original effect — that is, the most robust findings tended to remain easily detectable, if not necessarily as strong. THE PSYCHOLOGICAL FITNESS-FOR-DUTY EVALUATION: WHAT EVERY POLICE OFFICER SHOULD KNOW Laurence Miller, PhD You’ve been referred for a psychological fitness-for-duty (FFD) evaluation.
You’re not happy about it.
Offender profiling, also known as criminal profiling, is an investigative tool used by law enforcement agencies to identify likely suspects and has been used by investigators to link cases that may have been committed by the same perpetrator.
Multiple crimes may be linked to a specific offender and the profile may be used to predict the identified offender's future actions.
The Acceleration Institute is dedicated to the study of curricular acceleration for academically talented students. Academic acceleration is one of the most effective educational interventions for gifted students.
An article from "The New Atlantis." Email Updates. Enter your email address to receive occasional updates and previews from The New Atlantis.