Descriptors of living alone for elders: based on Turkey national data

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Adana F., DURMAZ S. , Ozvurmaz S., Akpinar C. V. , Yesilfidan D.

BMC GERIATRICS, vol.22, no.1, 2022 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 22 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.1186/s12877-021-02706-9
  • Title of Journal : BMC GERIATRICS
  • Keywords: Elderly, Social inequalities, Turkey, National, Numerical data, OLD


Background The objective of this study is to analyze the data of the 2018 Turkey Demographic and Health Survey and determine personal and demographic factors associated with elderly who are 60 and older and living alone. Methods This cross-sectional study is the secondary analysis of the national data obtained with the 2018 Turkey Demographic and Health Survey. Logistic regression analysis was used to estimate differences in living alone based on gender, age, welfare status, region of residence, urban/rural residence, whether the person is working in a paid job and home ownership. Independent effect of every variable is observed in the first stage and then checked for all variables in the equation. Results There is a total of 37,897 participants' data in the Turkey Demographic and Health Survey Database. In the study, there are 6244 (16.5%) older adults in 11,056 households and 9.79% of the elderly population is alone. The percentage of elderly women living alone is 13.62% while this percentage is 5.48% for elderly men (p < 0.001). The risk of living alone for elderly women is 2.74 times more than elderly men (95% Cl 2.28-3.31). Being poor increases the risk of living alone for elderly people 2.84 fold compared to being rich (95% Cl 2.17-3.71). Those who have high school and higher education level have 2.38 (95% Cl 1.73-3.29) fold higher risk of living alone than people with lower education. Older adults living in the Western region of the country have 3.18 (95% Cl 2.20-4.59) times higher risk of living alone than older adults living in the Eastern region of the country. The risk of living alone for older adults increases 1.90 fold (95% Cl 1.55-2.32) if the house they live in do not belong to a household member. Conclusion Based on these findings, needs of older adults under risk should be met to allow them to be healthy and live their lives in better social, economic and cultural conditions.