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The European Journal of Psychiatry

Print version ISSN 0213-6163

Abstract

YAMAWAKI, Niwako et al. Predictors of negative attitudes toward mental health services: A general population study in Japan. Eur. J. Psychiat. [online]. 2011, vol.25, n.2, pp.101-110. ISSN 0213-6163.  http://dx.doi.org/10.4321/S0213-61632011000200005.

Background and Objectives: As the impact of psychiatric disorders increases in Japan, finding a method of predicting attitudes towards mental health services has become increasingly important. Aims: This study examined the factors that influence negative attitude toward mental health services among a general population in Japan. Methods: Data from a survey asking 2,023 Japanese adults about desire to receive counseling, perceived level of knowledge about counseling, desire to live in the same neighborhood in the future, choice of persons to talk to about psychiatric problems, and demographic information were analyzed. Results: Women reported greater desire to receive psychiatric treatment than men did and were more often willing to consult with friends and family about mental health issues. Older individuals showed more negative attitudes than those in younger age groups. Those who anticipated staying in the same neighborhood also reported being less likely to have desire to seek treatment. Conclusions: Fear of stigma is one of the explanations of the negative attitudes toward psychiatric treatment. Given that age, gender, and perceived knowledge of treatment predicted the negative attitudes toward seeking mental health services, community intervention programs should be developed to target such populations, educate individuals, and ameliorate stigma about such treatment.

Keywords : Help-seeking attitudes; Psychiatric disorders; Japan; Community survey.

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