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A question of (social) geography? - Mental health stigma and help-seeking behavior for depressive symptoms among individuals living in rural and urban areas: A literature review

Leemhuis, J.S. (2020) A question of (social) geography? - Mental health stigma and help-seeking behavior for depressive symptoms among individuals living in rural and urban areas: A literature review.

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Abstract:The increasing prevalence of depressive disorders worldwide underlines the importance to ensure access to mental healthcare. Investigations on stigma as a key barrier for psychological help-seeking behavior among different living areas demonstrated inconsistent results. Therefore, this literature review aims to compare the perception of public and personal mental health stigma and formal and informal help-seeking behavior for depressive symptoms between rural and urban population. Relevant literature was identified by searching the three online databases PsychINFO, Scopus and ScienceDirect resulting in twelve relevant articles. Results revealed inconsistencies in the perception of public and self-stigma between urban and rural areas. Among both living areas, young, highly educated women with own experiences with depression and a non-supportive environment reported higher public stigma. Young men without personal experiences with depression reported higher self-stigma. Rural population prefer informal help-seeking over formal help-seeking, urban population prefer a combination of formal and informal help-seeking. Analysis of rurality definitions revealed that most studies provide little information on the living location of participants. Future research could investigate and clarify the importance of rurality and urbanity on public and personal stigma. Moreover, the importance of developing universal guidelines for classifying areas from urban to very remote is underlined.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology MSc (66604)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/85224
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