Article

Living alone and antidepressant medication use: a prospective study in a working-age population.

Finnish Institute of Occupational Health, Topeliuksenkatu 41 a A, 00250 Helsinki, Finland.
BMC Public Health (Impact Factor: 2.08). 03/2012; 12:236. DOI: 10.1186/1471-2458-12-236
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT An increasing proportion of the population lives in one-person households. The authors examined whether living alone predicts the use of antidepressant medication and whether socioeconomic, psychosocial, or behavioral factors explain this association.
The participants were a nationally representative sample of working-age Finns from the Health 2000 Study, totaling 1695 men and 1776 women with a mean age of 44.6 years. In the baseline survey in 2000, living arrangements (living alone vs. not) and potential explanatory factors, including psychosocial factors (social support, work climate, hostility), sociodemographic factors (occupational grade, education, income, unemployment, urbanicity, rental living, housing conditions), and health behaviors (smoking, alcohol use, physical activity, obesity), were measured. Antidepressant medication use was followed up from 2000 to 2008 through linkage to national prescription registers.
Participants living alone had a 1.81-fold (CI = 1.46-2.23) higher purchase rate of antidepressants during the follow-up period than those who did not live alone. Adjustment for sociodemographic factors attenuated this association by 21% (adjusted OR = 1.64, CI = 1.32-2.05). The corresponding attenuation was 12% after adjustment for psychosocial factors (adjusted OR = 1.71, CI = 1.38-2.11) and 9% after adjustment for health behaviors (adjusted OR = 1.74, CI = 1.41-2.14). Gender-stratified analyses showed that in women the greatest attenuation was related to sociodemographic factors and in men to psychosocial factors.
These data suggest that people living alone may be at increased risk of developing mental health problems. The public health value is in recognizing that people who live alone are more likely to have material and psychosocial problems that may contribute to excess mental health problems in this population group.

0 Bookmarks
 · 
124 Views
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Several behavioral interventions, based on social enrichment and observational learning are applied in treatment of neuropsychiatric disorders. However, the mechanism of such modulatory effect and the safety of applied methods on individuals involved in social support need further investigation. We took advantage of known differences between inbred mouse strains to reveal the effect of social enrichment on behavior and neurobiology of animals with different behavioral phenotypes. C57BL/6 and DBA/2 female mice displaying multiple differences in cognitive, social, and emotional behavior were group-housed either in same-strain or in mixed-strain conditions. Comprehensive behavioral phenotyping and analysis of expression of several plasticity- and stress-related genes were done to measure the reciprocal effects of social interaction between the strains. Contrary to our expectation, mixed housing did not change the behavior of DBA/2 mice. Nevertheless, the level of serum corticosterone and the expression of glucocorticoid receptor Nr3c1 in the brain were increased in mixed housed DBA/2 as compared with those of separately housed DBA/2 mice. In contrast, socially active C57BL/6 animals were more sensitive to the mixed housing, displaying several signs of stress: alterations in learning, social, and anxiety-like behavior and anhedonia. These behavioral impairments were accompanied by the elevated serum corticosterone and the reduced expression of Nr3c1, as well as the elevated Bdnf levels in the cortex and hippocampus. Our results demonstrate the importance of social factors in modulation of both behavior and the underlying neurobiological mechanisms in stress response, and draw attention to the potential negative impact of social interventions for individuals involved in social support.
    Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience 01/2014; 8:257. · 4.76 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: We examined whether socioeconomic and psychosocial adversity in midlife predicts post-retirement depressive symptoms. A prospective cohort study of British civil servants who responded to a self-administered questionnaire in middle-age and at older ages, 21 years later. The study sample consisted of 3,939 Whitehall II Study participants (2,789 men, 1,150 women; mean age 67.6 years at follow-up) who were employed at baseline and retired at follow-up. Midlife adversity was assessed by self-reported socioeconomic adversity (low occupational position; poor standard of living) and psychosocial adversity (high job strain; few close relationships). Symptoms of depression post-retirement were measured by the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression scale. After adjustment for sociodemographic and health-related covariates at baseline and follow-up, there were strong associations between midlife adversities and post-retirement depressive symptoms: low occupational position (odds ratio [OR]: 1.70, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.15-2.51), poor standard of living (OR: 2.37, 95% CI: 1.66-3.39), high job strain (OR: 1.52, 95% CI: 1.09-2.14), and few close relationships (OR: 1.51, 95% CI: 1.12-2.03). The strength of the associations between socioeconomic, psychosocial, work-related, or non-work related exposures and depressive symptoms was similar. Robust associations from observational data suggest that several socioeconomic and psychosocial risk factors for symptoms of depression post-retirement can be detected already in midlife.
    The American journal of geriatric psychiatry: official journal of the American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry 04/2014; · 3.35 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Past research suggests that spouses influence one another to vote, but relies almost exclusively on correlation in turnout. It is therefore difficult to establish whether spouses mobilize each other or tend to marry similar others. Here, we test the dependency hypothesis by examining voting behavior before and after the death of a spouse. We link nearly 6 million California voter records to Social Security death records, and use both coarsened exact matching and multiple cohort comparison to estimate the effects of spousal loss. The results show that after turnout rates stabilize, widowed individuals vote nine percentage points less than they would had their spouse still been living, and that this change may persist indefinitely. Variations in this "widowhood effect" on voting support a social isolation explanation for the drop in turnout.
    American Journal of Political Science 03/2013; · 2.76 Impact Factor

Full-text (2 Sources)

Download
41 Downloads
Available from
May 22, 2014