Title

Mental Health Stigma in English and Spanish-Speaking Countries

Academic Level at Time of Presentation

Senior

Major

Psychology

Minor

Spanish

List all Project Mentors & Advisor(s)

Michael Bordieri, PhD.; Jeff Osborne, PhD.

Presentation Format

Oral Presentation

Abstract/Description

Mental health stigma is one of the most pressing issues faced by individuals with mental disorders. Mental health stigma is commonly defined as negative attitudes and/or behaviors targeted toward individuals that appear to have a mental health disorder. As a result, many individuals facing psychological health issues will elect to not seek treatment due to fears of how they will be perceived and treated by other members of society (Corrigan, 2004). Stigma has also been shown to increase levels of psychological distress, regardless of whether an individual is giving or receiving the stigma (Masuda et al., 2009). Research has shown that mental health stigma is a global phenomenon and is not limited to the US and other English-speaking nations (Pescosolido et al. 2013). The aim of this study is to examine differences in mental health stigma between an English-speaking and a Spanish-speaking population. I hypothesize that there will be a difference in stigma perception between populations, but these differences could vary depending on the country from which the samples are taken. Additionally, I hypothesize that levels of stigma will predict levels of distress in both populations, and that there will be a difference in the relationship between stigma and distress in both populations.

Keywords: mental health stigma, cross-cultural, Spanish, psychological distress

Affiliations

Honors Thesis, Psychology: Completed Projects

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Mental Health Stigma in English and Spanish-Speaking Countries

Mental health stigma is one of the most pressing issues faced by individuals with mental disorders. Mental health stigma is commonly defined as negative attitudes and/or behaviors targeted toward individuals that appear to have a mental health disorder. As a result, many individuals facing psychological health issues will elect to not seek treatment due to fears of how they will be perceived and treated by other members of society (Corrigan, 2004). Stigma has also been shown to increase levels of psychological distress, regardless of whether an individual is giving or receiving the stigma (Masuda et al., 2009). Research has shown that mental health stigma is a global phenomenon and is not limited to the US and other English-speaking nations (Pescosolido et al. 2013). The aim of this study is to examine differences in mental health stigma between an English-speaking and a Spanish-speaking population. I hypothesize that there will be a difference in stigma perception between populations, but these differences could vary depending on the country from which the samples are taken. Additionally, I hypothesize that levels of stigma will predict levels of distress in both populations, and that there will be a difference in the relationship between stigma and distress in both populations.

Keywords: mental health stigma, cross-cultural, Spanish, psychological distress