Mental health articles

OF mental health care and mentally ill

Define Affective Symptoms

Affective Disorders

Most research on the cultural meaning of affective illness has focused on unipolar depression. Findings from these studies suggest that the cultural context shapes the way specific depressive symptoms are understood. For example, although ‘‘dhat syndrome’’ in India resembles depression, it exists in a cultural context that views semen as the vital source of male physical and mental energy. Ying provides additional evidence that cultural contexts influence conceptions of depression. She found that for a Chinese-American community sample, somatic and affective symptoms of depression were inseparable constructs, whereas for a White American community, they were distinct constructs.

The mixing of somatic and affective symptoms is consistent with Chinese notions that the mind and body are one. Similarly, Ying et al. found that affective and somatic symptoms were inseparable for Chinese college students who lived in Taiwan; however, they were separable factors for Chinese-Americans who lived in the United States. Thus, although depressive symptoms themselves may not be invariant across cultures, how they are viewed and how they relate to each other may. Anxiety Disorders.Cultural idioms of distress perspectives argue that anxiety symptoms are shaped by the cultural contexts in which they occur. Thus, because cultures differ in the events that trigger anxiety, the meanings of anxiety may vary across cultures. For example, Guarnaccia found that although ‘‘ataque de nervios’’ resembles depressive and anxious symptoms, it is defined by its triggering event—upsetting or frightening events in the family sphere. Russell and Tanaka-Matsumi argue that ‘‘taijin kyofusho’’ is unique to Japanese contexts because it can be understood only in terms of Japanese values and norms. Malgady, Rogler, and Cortes  demonstrate that Puerto Rican adults use cultural idioms of anger (e.g., aggression and assertiveness) to express their depression and anxiety, suggesting that the cultural meanings of depression and anxiety may be different from those of European-American adults. Substance Abuse and Dependence.Variation among cultures in the meaning of alcohol and substance use may influence consumption rates. For instance, Caetano found that although African-American, Hispanic, and White American adults in the United States (controlling for differences in income and education) agreed that alcoholism is a disease, the first two groups were more likely than White Americans to view alcoholics as morally weak. These findings are consistent with the ethnic patterns in alcohol consumption described earlier. Sigelman and colleaguesfound that Native American schoolchildren were less likely to see alcoholism as serious, saw alcoholics as less responsible for their problems, and viewed alcoholism as a disease more than Hispanic or White American children. These findings are consistent with Pedigo’s  assertions that alcohol and substance use and abuse have cultural meanings for Native Americans that render them more culturally acceptable in Native American culture than in White American culture. For instance, Native Americans are more likely to view individuals holistically and therefore to be more accepting and less critical of problem drinking than members of other cultural groups. Furthermore, in some Native American groups, drinking and other forms of substance use are often viewed as ways of coping with past and present stresses.

In all likelihood, this explains why alcohol consumption rates are higher in Native American groups than in other ethnic groups in the United States. In other cultural contexts, the use of alcohol and other substances in spiritual and religious ceremonies may also influence the cultural meaning of alcohol and substance consumption. In summary, cultures vary in their views of mental illness, tolerance of deviant behavior, and conceptions of emotion, the self, and the mindbody relationship. These cultural differences shape the meaning of and social response to mental illness and may influence the course of mental illness.

Post Footer automatically generated by wp-posturl plugin for wordpress.


Tags: , ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Some of our content is collected from Internet, please contact us when some of them is tortious. Email: