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Wellness Tip

Can Internet Use Fight the Blues?

by Berkeley Wellness  

Internet use may help reduce the risk of depression in older people, according to a recent study in the Journals of Gerontology, Series B. It analyzed data on more than 3,000 nonworking people over 50 who took part in the ongoing Health and Retirement Survey (sponsored by the National Institute on Aging).

After controlling for factors such as age, sex, and debilitating health conditions, the researchers found that older people who spent time online were about one-third less likely to be depressed than nonusers. The reduction in the rate of depression was greatest in people living alone, suggesting that Internet use may help counter feelings of isolation and loneliness, the researchers concluded.