Investigating the Relationship between Media Usage, Depression, and Quality of Life among Older Adults
Wang, K.-T.; Fu, S.-H.; Hsieh, P.-L.; Lin, Y.-L.; Yang, S.-Y.
The uses and gratifications theory suggests that various types of media can greatly affect people's lives. This is especially true among older adults who tend to use media for leisure. However, there is insufficient research regarding the relationship between media usage, depression, and quality of life among older adults. The purpose of this study was to explore the association between media usage (traditional and internet media), depression, and quality of life among older adults. Using a cross-sectional design, this study recruited individuals aged 65 years and older in central Taiwan and collected data via a structured questionnaire. Contents of the questionnaire included demographic details, a media usage behavior questionnaire, the Brief Symptoms Rating Scale (BSRS-5), and the Quality of Life Scale developed by the World Health Organization (WHOQOL-BREF). Subsequently, multiple regression analyses were conducted to investigate the association between media usage, depression, and quality of life of older adults. The average age of the 252 participants (107 males) was 70.0 ± 5.4 years. Regression analysis revealed a significant, negative relationship between the number of hours spent watching television and the degree of depression. Additionally, the number of hours spent watching television was significantly negatively related to the quality of life in terms of both the psychological health and social relationships categories. In contrast, the number of hours spent reading newspapers and magazines was significantly positively related to quality of life in the categories of psychological health, social relationships, and environment. Finally, the number of hours spent browsing internet media was significantly positively related to the quality of life in the psychological health category. Media usage may affect the degree of depression and quality of life of older adults depending on the type of media and amount of usage.