The relationship between COVID-19 fear levels and healthy lifestyle behaviors of elderly individuals: a cross-sectional study.Psychogeriatrics. 2023 May; 23(3):379-388.P
It is known that fear of COVID-19 is associated with many lifestyle behaviours including delays in access to healthcare services and smoking status. However, the relationship between healthy lifestyle behaviours and fear of COVID-19 in older individuals remains unclear. Therefore, there is a need for research that examines the relationship between healthy lifestyle behaviours and fear of COVID-19 in elderly individuals. The purpose of this study is to investigate the relationship between the COVID-19 fear levels of elderly individuals and their healthy lifestyle behaviours.
This cross-sectional study was carried out with individuals at or over the age of 65 registered at a public health centre located in eastern Turkey (N = 494). Data collection tools included a form for descriptive variables and two scales, the Fear of COVID-19 Scale (FCV-19 S) and the Healthy Lifestyle Behaviours Scale-II (HLSBS-II). Descriptive statistics, independent-samples t-test, ANOVA, correlation analyses, and hierarchical linear regression analyses were used in the analysis of the data.
The mean HLSBS-II and FCV-19 S scores of the participants were 127.61 ± 24.76 and 20.96 ± 7.29, respectively. While fear of COVID-19 alone, as indicated by the FCV-19 S score, explained 2.4% of the total variance in healthy lifestyle behaviours, fear of COVID-19, having a university degree, and high economic status together explained 7.5% of the total variance in healthy lifestyle behaviours indicated by scores on the HLSBS-II.
The results of this study showed that fear of COVID-19 and healthy lifestyle behaviours were dynamics that are positively related, albeit to a small extent, to each other for elderly individuals. Additionally, it was revealed that elderly individuals have moderate levels of fear of COVID-19 and healthy lifestyle behaviours.