Relationships Between Personal, Depression and Social Network Factors and Sleep Quality in Community-Dwelling Older Adults

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Abstract

Improving sleep quality is key to increasing life quality for the elderly. Clarifying the nature of sleep conditions and the factors that influence such is necessary to enrich the base of knowledge available to the clinical nursing profession and encourage effective nursing interventions in older populations. Purposes of this study were to describe sleep quality and identify the personal, depression and social network determinants of sleep quality among older people living independently. A cross-sectional research design was used, and 187 persons 65 years of age or older were recruited using two-stage random sampling from communities in Taipei City, Taiwan. All subjects were informed by the researchers and were asked to provide personal (demographic data, lifestyle behavior), depression, social network (perceived the relationships with and support from family, relatives/friends), and sleep quality (Chinese version of the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index, C-PSQI) information. Findings revealed that 25.7% of subjects were “poor sleepers” (attaining C-PSQI global scores > 5). The study identified significant relationships between three personal variables (alcohol consumption, educational level, and depressive tendencies), one social variable (relationships with relatives/friends) and sleep quality. Depression tendency, relationships with relatives/friends, college and above educational level, and habitual alcohol consumption accounted for 46.1% of sleep quality variance. Findings enrich the knowledge base by highlighting specific personal, depression and social network factors that could help nurses to assess sleep conditions more comprehensively. Nurses caring for older people should consider depression and social network factors (particularly the relationships with relatives/friends may play a discriminating role) as important determinants of sleep quality.

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