Person-Centred Approach: Mental Health Needs & COVID-19

Research Paper Title

Person-Centered Approach to the Diverse Mental Healthcare Needs During COVID 19 Pandemic.

Background

In this COVID-19 pandemic, many mental health problems arose.

The mental health difficulties are sufficiently significant to disturb the peace and wellbeing of the people involved.

A poor population’s mental health needs are complex (elderly individuals, those with chronic co-morbidity, youth and disadvantaged population, emergency care professionals, police officers, and patients with pre-existing mental health issues).

In resource-scarce environments, in the light of the person-centered treatment paradigm, there is an immediate need to plan to meet the emerging challenge.

Reference

Kar, S.K. & Singh, N. (2020) Person-Centered Approach to the Diverse Mental Healthcare Needs During COVID 19 Pandemic. SN Comprehensive Clinical Medicine. 15;1-3. doi: 10.1007/s42399-020-00428-4. Online ahead of print.

Can Emotional Responses to Stressors in Everyday Life Predict Long-Term Trajectories of Depressive Symptoms?

Research Paper Title

Emotional Responses to Stressors in Everyday Life Predict Long-Term Trajectories of Depressive Symptoms.

Background

Individuals’ emotional responses to stressors in everyday life are associated with long-term physical and mental health. Among many possible risk factors, the stressor-related emotional responses may play an important role in future development of depressive symptoms.

The current study examined how individuals’ positive and negative emotional responses to everyday stressors predicted their subsequent changes in depressive symptoms over 18 months.

Methods

Using an ecological momentary assessment approach, participants (n = 176) reported stressor exposure, positive affect (PA), and negative affect (NA) five times a day for 1 week (n = 5,483 observations) and provided longitudinal reports of depressive symptoms over the subsequent 18 months.

A multivariate multilevel latent growth curve model was used to directly link the fluctuations in emotions in response to momentary stressors in everyday life with the long-term trajectory of depressive symptoms.

Results

Adults who demonstrated a greater difference in stressor-related PA (i.e., relatively lower PA on stressor vs. nonstressor moments) reported larger increases in depressive symptoms over 18 months.

Those with greater NA responses to everyday stressors (i.e., relatively higher NA on stressor vs. nonstressor moments), however, did not exhibit differential long-term changes in depressive symptoms.

Conclusions

Adults showed a pattern consistent with both PA and NA responses to stressors in everyday life, but only the stressor-related changes in PA (but not in NA) predicted the growth of depressive symptoms over time.

These findings highlight the important-but often overlooked-role of positive emotional responses to everyday stressors in long-term mental health.

Reference

Zhaoyang, R., Scott, S.B., Smyth, J.M., Kang, J.E. & Sliwinski, M.J. (2019) Emotional Responses to Stressors in Everyday Life Predict Long-Term Trajectories of Depressive Symptoms. Annals of Behavioral Medicine. pii: kaz057. doi: 10.1093/abm/kaz057. [Epub ahead of print].

Mental Health Needs & Visits: Rural vs Urban Residents

Research Paper Title

Rural Residents With Mental Health Needs Have Fewer Care Visits Than Urban Counterparts.

Background

Analysis of a nationally representative sample of adults with mental health needs shows that rural residents have fewer ambulatory mental health visits than their urban counterparts do.

Even among people already on prescription medications for mental health conditions, rural-urban differences are large.

Reference

Kirby, J.B., Zuvekas, S.H., Borsky, A.E. & Ngo-Metzger, Q. (2019) Rural Residents With Mental Health Needs Have Fewer Care Visits Than Urban Counterparts. Health Affairs (Project Hope). 38(12), pp.2057-2060. doi: 10.1377/hlthaff.2019.00369.

The Experience of Sexual Minority Men & Mental Healthcare in Toronto, Canada

Research Paper Title

Mental health and structural harm: a qualitative study of sexual minority men’s experiences of mental healthcare in Toronto, Canada.

Background

Compared to the general population, sexual minority men report poorer mental health outcomes and higher mental healthcare utilisation.

However, they also report more unmet mental health needs.

Methods

To better understand this phenomenon, the researchers conducted qualitative interviews with 24 sexual minority men to explore the structural factors shaping their encounters with mental healthcare in Toronto, Canada.

Interviews were analysed using grounded theory.

Results

Many participants struggled to access mental healthcare and felt more marginalised and distressed because of two interrelated sets of barriers.

  • The first were general barriers, hurdles to mental healthcare not exclusive to sexual minorities. These included:
    • Financial and logistical obstacles;
    • The prominence of psychiatry and the biomedical model; and
    • Unsatisfactory provider encounters.
  • The second were sexual minority barriers, obstacles explicitly rooted in heterosexism and homophobia sometimes intersecting with other forms of marginality. These included:
    • Experiencing discrimination and distrust; and
    • Limited sexual minority affirming options.

Discussions of general barriers outweighed those of sexual minority barriers, demonstrating the health consequences of structural harms in the absence of overt structural stigma.

Conclusions

Healthcare inaccessibility, income insecurity and the high cost of living are fostering poor mental health among sexual minority men.

Research must consider the upstream policy changes necessary to counteract these harms.

Reference

Gaspar, M., Marshall, Z., Rodrigues, R., Adam, B.D., Brennan, D.J., Hart, T.A. & Grace, D. (2019) Mental health and structural harm: a qualitative study of sexual minority men’s experiences of mental healthcare in Toronto, Canada. Culture, Health, & Sexuality. 1-17. doi: 10.1080/13691058.2019.1692074. [Epub ahead of print].