Social Exclusion and Mental Well-being of Older People in Rural China

By Hongmei Tong, Daniel Lai and Aimei Guo.

Published by The International Journal of Aging and Society

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: February 24, 2016 $US5.00

The growth of the aging population in China is an important reality facing professionals and policy makers working with older adults. Challenges and needs related to the mental health of older adults, particularly those in rural areas in China, have been understudied. This cross-sectional study involved 499 older adults randomly selected from four rural counties in Jiangsu Province, China. Social exclusion was measured according to material resources, housing conditions, social relations, civic participation, and basic services. Mental health indicators included depression, happiness, and worry. Hierarchical binary logistic regression analysis was conducted to examine the association between social exclusion and mental health variables. Exclusion related to material resources, housing conditions, social relations, participation, and basic community services were found to be negatively associated with mental health outcomes. Social policies and programs to reduce various forms of social exclusion should be developed in order to enhance the mental health of older Chinese in rural areas.

Keywords: Social Exclusion, Aging Chinese, Rural China, Mental Health, Mental Well-being, Depression

The International Journal of Aging and Society, Volume 6, Issue 2, June 2016, pp.1-15. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: February 24, 2016 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 607.960KB)).

Hongmei Tong

Post-doctoral Fellow, Faculty of Social Work, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada

Prof. Daniel Lai

Chair, Professor, Social Work and Gerontology, Department of Applied Social Sciences, Institute of Active Ageing, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong

Dr. Aimei Guo

Professor, Ginling Women’s College, Nanjing Normal University, Nanjing, China