Understanding the relationship between mental illness and ethnicity

Asian patients, for example, are more likely to report their somatic symptoms, such as dizziness, while not reporting their emotional symptoms.

The efficacy of mental health treatments is well documented A range of treatments exists for most mental disorders. Cultural and social factors have the most direct role in the causation of post-traumatic stress disorder PTSD.

Until more definitive findings are available, this Supplement concludes, on the basis of smaller studies, that overall prevalence rates for mental disorders in the United States are similar across minority and majority populations.

Jemal A, Ward E, et al. Turning to the question of public attitudes toward mental illness, the largest and most detailed study of stigma in the United States was performed in as part of the General Social Survey, a respected, nationally representative survey being conducted by the National Opinion Research Center since the s.

People who are indigenous to the Americas, for example, may be called Hispanic if they are from Mexico but American Indian if they are from the United States.

Those cultures most visibly shape the interaction with the mental health consumer through diagnosis, treatment, and organization and financing of services. Thus, when clinician and patient do not come from the same ethnic or cultural background, there is greater potential for cultural differences to emerge.

In response to societal stigma, people with mental problems internalize public attitudes and become so embarrassed or ashamed that they often conceal symptoms and fail to seek treatment Sussman et al. The visible physical traits associated with race, such as hair and skin color, are defined by a tiny fraction of our genes, and they do not reliably differentiate between the social categories of race.

The extent to which minority groups rely on informal sources in lieu of, or in addition to, formal mental health services in primary or specialty care is not well studied.

Chapter 2 Culture Counts: Office of Management and Budget created these four categories for the collection of census and other types of information by Federal agencies. Even though there are similarities and differences in the distribution of certain mental disorders across populations, the United States has an aggregate rate of about 20 percent of adults and children with diagnosable mental disorders DHHS, ; Table The strongest, most compelling evidence to refute race as a biological category comes from genetic analysis of different racial groups.

Culture is as applicable to groups of whites, such as Irish Americans or German Americans, as it is to racial and ethnic minorities. In other words, it seems that culture and societal factors play a more sub-ordinate role in causation of these disorders.

Understanding Associations between Race, Socioeconomic Status and Health: Patterns and Prospects

As but one example, the experience of poverty for immigrants who previously had been wealthy in their homeland cannot be equated with the experience of poverty for immigrants coming from economically disadvantaged backgrounds.

To infer a role for bias and stereotyping by clinicians does not prove that it is actually occurring, nor does it indicate the extent to which it explains disparities in mental health services. In other words, it seems that culture and societal factors play a more sub-ordinate role in causation of these disorders.

For instance, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders include at least 43 separate subgroups who speak over languages. Race, still matters for health when SES is considered, as indeed does gender.

Both are plausible explanations for the robust relationship between poverty and mental illness DHHS, Growth Rates African Americans had long been the country's largest ethnic minority group.

It would be helpful to be able to construct a similar table for racial and ethnic minorities. Consumers can choose, too, between distinct treatment modalities, such as psychotherapy, counseling, pharmacotherapy medicationsor rehabilitation.

Communication The emphasis on verbal communication is a distinguishing feature of the mental health field. Mental health professionals trace their roots to Western medicine and, more particularly, to two major European milestones - the first forms of biological psychiatry in the midth century and the advent of psychotherapy or "talk therapy" near the end of that century Shorter, Research has not yet determined whether culture-bound syndromes are distinct 1 from established mental disorders, are variants of them, or whether both mental disorders and culture-bound syndromes reflect different ways in which the cultural and social environment interacts with genes to shape illness Chapter 1.

With a seemingly endless range of subgroups and individual variations, culture is important because it bears upon what all people bring to the clinical setting.It reveals the diverse effects of culture and society on mental health, mental illness, and mental health services.

This understanding is key to developing mental health services that are more responsive to the cultural and social contexts of racial and ethnic minorities. By contrast, another large, nationally representative study found a different relationship between race, ethnicity, and attitudes towards patients with mental illness.

Asian and Hispanic Americans saw them as more dangerous than did whites. Population Health: Behavioral and Social Science Insights Understanding the Relationship Between Education and Health. A Review of the Evidence and an Examination of Community Perspectives.

Previous Page. Table of Contents.

Population Health: Behavioral and Social Science Insights. Conclusion. Foreword. Introduction. Preface. Section I. Understanding Mental Disorders: A Patient and Family Resource was used to evaluate the association between mental illness and residential transience and test for an interaction between mental illness and race-ethnicity on residential transience.

All tests were two-tailed, with p. MENTAL HEALTH: CULTURE, RACE, AND ETHNICITY A Supplement to Mental Health: A Report of the Surgeon General DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES illuminating our understanding of mental illness and its treatment.

It found a range of effective treatments for most mental disorders. The efficacy of mental health treatment. Population Health: Behavioral and Social Science Insights Understanding the Relationship Between Education and Health.

A Review of the Evidence and an Examination of Community Perspectives. Previous Page. Table of Contents. Population Health: Behavioral and Social Science Insights. Conclusion. Foreword. Introduction. .

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Understanding the relationship between mental illness and ethnicity
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