Factors Related to Self-Confidence to Live Alone in Community-Dwelling Older Adults: A Cross-Sectional Study

So Im Ryu, Be Long Cho, Sun Ju Chang, Hana Ko, Yu Mi Yi, Eun Young Noh, Hye Ryung Cho, Yeon Hwan Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Many older adults prefer to live alone in their own homes, with age-related issues in physical movement, regardless of their cultural background. Importantly, however, to identify the features of successfully ageing in place (AIP), and foster independent living among these individuals, this study explored their level of self-confidence to live alone and its related factors. Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional study using secondary data from an earlier study with older adults living alone in South Korea recruited by convenience sampling methods (N = 936, mean age = 77.1 years, 76.1% female). Data regarding the general, health-related, and social characteristics as well as self-confidence to live alone were collected via face-to-face interviews in 2019. Self-confidence to live alone was measured with a numeric rating scale of 0 to 10. Results: The average self-confidence score to live alone was 6.59. A regression analysis showed that mould exposure at home, depression, emergency department visits, and loneliness hinder self-confidence to live alone. Meanwhile, such self-confidence was facilitated by independency in instrumental activities of daily living (IADL), interactions with family members, social service utilisation, and social support. Conclusions: This study suggests that healthcare providers need to consider the importance of self-confidence to live alone and influencing functional, mental, social, and environmental factors to promote quality of life as well as successful AIP for older adults living alone. Further, self-confidence to live alone could be a new practical index in the field of health and ageing to screen the successful AIP of older adults living alone.

Original languageEnglish
Article number291
JournalBMC geriatrics
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2021


  • Ageing
  • Depression
  • Independent living
  • Safety
  • Self-concept
  • Social isolation


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