Korean J Fam Pract.  2021 Apr;11(2):120-126. 10.21215/kjfp.2021.11.2.120.

Lifestyle, Health Status and Socioeconomic Factors Associated with Depressive Symptoms in Korean Young Adults: Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2017

  • 1Department of Family Practice and Community Medicine, Chosun University Hospital, Gwangju, Korea
  • 2Department of Family Practice and Community Medicine, Chosun University College of Medicine, Gwangju, Korea


In recent years, the number of suicides in young adults has increased rapidly, leading to a major social problem. According to several reports, suicide is closely related to depressive symptoms. Therefore, we aimed to evaluate the factors related to depressive symptoms in young adults.
Data were collected from 1,519 people aged 19–39 from the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2017, excluding incomplete data. Subjective depressive symptoms were investigated as to whether they had felt sad or despaired for more than two weeks in the past year. Age, BMI, comorbidities, employment status, income level, education level, number of family members, marriage status, subjective health status, subjective stress perception level, smoking, alcohol drinking, sleep duration, and physical activities were assessed as the factors that affect depressive symptoms.
Of the 1,519 people, 187 (12.3%) people complained of depressive symptoms. Multivariate analysis showed that sex (OR, 1.972; 95% CI, 1.336– 2.909; P=0.001), employment status (OR, 0.641; 95% CI, 0.451–0.912; P=0.014), marriage status (OR, 0.537; 95% CI, 0.321–0.896; P=0.017), subjective stress perception level (OR, 4.343; 95% CI, 3.049–6.184; P<0.001), and smoking (OR, 1.914; 95% CI, 1.237–2.960; P=0.004) were factors that were associated with depressive symptoms.
It can be estimated that cases of depression in young adults will increase more rapidly in the future. Therefore, based on this study, we suggest that it is necessary to analyze various factors related to depressive symptoms and to find a practical solution to the problem.


Depression; Suicide; Socioeconomic Factors; Korean Young Adults
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