Background: The population ageing phenomenon has started in many of developing countries like Iran. Most developed countries have accepted the age of “65” years as a definition of “elderly”, but some developing countries like Iran consider the age of “60”. We aimed to compare the physical and mental health of people who aged 60-64 years with those who aged 65-69 years in order to determine if the definition of elderly in our country is true.
Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted between April to September 2011, in the west in Iran. Participants in this study are those who referred to the elderly care centers. With random sampling, 2 from 3 centers and with convenience sampling 302 peoples aged 60-69 years were selected. All participants were interviewed via face to face or with telephone using standard questionnaires including Kessler (K6) scale, psychological wellbeing scale, activities of daily living scale and sf-36 scale. The statistical differences were assessed by Pearson’s chi-square at 5% level of significance.
Results: Statistical comparisons have shown that there is a significant difference among two age groups under study regarding to psychological distress scale, psychological wellbeing scale and activity of daily living scale. No meaningful difference was seen concern with physical functioning (SF-36) scale between two groups.
Conclusion: Our finding proposed that age of 60 possibly is better for onset of delivering elderly care services. Other