Neighborhood language isolation and depressive symptoms among elderly U.S. Latinos.
PURPOSE: Neighborhood segregation related to cultural factors, such as language use, may influence elderly Latino depression. We examined the association between neighborhood-level Spanish language segregation and individual depressive symptoms among elderly Latinos. METHODS: We linked U.S. Census language use data with geocoded population-based data from 1789 elderly Latinos (mean age = 70.6 years) participating in the Sacramento Area Latino Study on Aging (1998-2008). Neighborhood language segregation was measured with the Index of Concentration at the Extremes, which demonstrates the extent to which residents are concentrated at extremes of deprivation and privilege. We fit two-level generalized linear-mixed models with random intercepts for census tracts to quantify the association between neighborhood-level language segregation and depressive symptoms, adjusting for identified confounders. RESULTS: After adjusting for age, sex, and nativity, residents of highly segregated Spanish-speaking neighborhoods had more depressive symptoms than those in highly segregated English-only-speaking neighborhoods (β = -4.410; 95% confidence interval [CI] = -6.851 to -1.970). This association was largely attenuated upon adjustment for individual-level education (β = -2.119; 95% CI = -4.650 to 0.413). CONCLUSIONS: Linguistically segregated communities may benefit from targeted outreach given the high depression prevalence in these neighborhoods. Furthermore, our findings suggest that limited access to fundamental social protections, such as education, may drive the segregation-depression association among U.S. Latinos.
Ward, JB; Albrecht, SS; Robinson, WR; Pence, BW; Maselko, J; Haan, MN; Aiello, AE
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