OBJECTIVE: This study investigated whether health literacy is associated with depressive symptoms among Korean adults, when adjusting for relevant risk factors for depression. METHODS: Data were collected from a sample of 585 community-dwelling Korean adults living in Seoul and Kwangju, South Korea, using a quota sampling strategy. A cross-sectional, multivariate regression analysis was used to investigate the association between health literacy and depressive symptoms. RESULTS: When controlled for covariates, a lower level of health literacy was significantly associated with a higher level of depressive symptoms. CONCLUSION: Health literacy may play an important role in preventing and treating depression. Future research is needed to determine if improving health literacy, through health promotion interventions, can enhance community-dwelling Korean adults’ understanding of depressive symptoms and relevant treatment options.
- health literacy
- mental health