Summary: Older adults' engagement on social media may help reduce loneliness and improve mental health.
Using 2019–2020 California Health Interview Survey (CHIS) data, authors examine loneliness and social media use and its association with severe psychological distress among older adults and whether social media use moderated the association of loneliness on severe psychological distress among older adults.
Findings: Loneliness, health status, and being Asian were strong predictors of severe psychological distress among older adults. This study underscores the significant impact of loneliness on poor mental health among older adults, emphasizing that while frequent social media use correlates with severe psychological distress, it may not alleviate the association of loneliness on poor mental health. This highlights the urgent need to address social isolation and promote genuine social connectedness, particularly among Asian older adults.
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