Elderly Finnish people's experiences with coping at home


Pietilä A-M, Tervo A. International Journal of Nursing Practice 1998; 4: 19–24

The aim of this study was to describe the experiences of elderly Finnish people with coping at home. Twenty elderly inhabitants of the city of Oulu in Finland, over 75 years of age, who live at home were interviewed. Content analysis was used as the method. According to the analysis, elderly people's coping at home consisted of social contacts, daily events as the substance of life, and previous life experiences. Social contacts consisted of family, public health services, and neighbours. Daily events as the substance of life included taking part in activities of daily living. The contents of previous life experiences consisted of thinking back to organize one's life experiences and their influence on one's own life. The factors that promoted coping at home were maintenance of health, the experience of well-being, and security.

The findings of this study indicate that by supporting elderly people to cope at home, it is possible to influence their sense of safety and well-being and hence their quality of life.