The aim of the current study was to examine the prevalence and socio-demographic correlates of hopelessness among Turkish elderly people. A convenience sample of 100 elderly people (51 women, 49 men) living in a city in the central Black Sea region of Turkey completed the Beck Hopelessness Scale and a data collection instrument to identify their socio-demographic information. The data was analyzed using Chi-Square, Pearson correlation, and hierarchical multiple regression analysis. The study results revealed that 81% of the elderly, or approximately eight out of 10 elderly people, experience hopelessness, ranging from mild to severe levels, and that severe hopelessness is more prevalent among elderly people living in nursing homes. No gender differences were found in terms of the severity of hopelessness among the elderly. The results of the hierarchical multiple regression analysis also showed that hopelessness scores were positively associated with living in a nursing home, being widowed/a widower, and having a low monthly income. Considering the fact that hopelessness levels are correlated with suicidal thoughts, depression, and adverse health conditions, the mental health professionals who aim to increase the well-being of the elderly should conduct screening studies to determine hopelessness levels among this population. Mental health support is also recommended to increase hope among elderly Turkish people, specifically those living in nursing homes and those who are widowed/widowers and low-income individuals.
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