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Recognizing mental health problems in the ageing community 

Recognizing mental health problems in the ageing community
Chapter:
Recognizing mental health problems in the ageing community
Author(s):

Linda Chiu Wa Lam

, and Wai Chi Chan

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198792994.003.0029
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date: 05 December 2020

With an increase in life expectancy worldwide, the ageing population has been expanding in the last few decades. Advanced age is associated with a high prevalence of physical morbidity. Dementia, the commonest type of mental disorder in later life, has been widely recognized as a public health priority. However, it is important to realize that other mental health problems are also common in old age. Depression and anxiety disorders are affecting a significant proportion of older adults, and may be associated with cognitive decline. This chapter will draw on current research related to key mental health problems in old age, and explore their public health significance through exploration of major prospective, large-scale, long-term cohort studies that shed light on the risk and protective factors that may influence the manifestations of mental health problems and associated disorders from a life course perspective.

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