Psychosocial and Mental Health Problems of Older People in Postearthquake Nepal
Ramesh P. Adhikari, Nawaraj Upadhaya, Sasmita Paudel, Ruja Pokhrel, Nagendra Bhandari, Laura Cole, and Suraj Koirala.
Journal of Aging and Health
Published April 3, 2017
Objective: To identify community perceptions on psychosocial and mental health problems of older people in postearthquake situation in Nepal.
Method: A qualitative methodology was adopted to explore the experience and opinions of older people, social workers, school teachers, health orkers, and nongovernmental organization workers on the psychosocial and ental health problems of older people in Nepal, using key informant interviews.
Results: Major local vocabulary for older peoples’ psychosocial and mental health problems were “bichalan” (variation in mood and feeling), ekohoro” (becoming single minded), “athmabiswasko kami” (low self-esteem), and “bina karan rune” (crying without any reason). The major causes ttributed to older people’s problems were physical injury, disability, family conflict, and economic problems. Forgetfulness, tiredness, loss of concentration, estlessness, and isolation were observed in older people since the 2015 earthquake.
Discussion: The findings suggest that earthquake had negative impact on older people’s psychosocial well-being; however, little support or treatment options have been made available to these individuals. The tailormade community-based psychosocial and mental health programs for older people are needed.