Mental Health and Stigma
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In this article, the writer notes that the stigma attached to mental illness is found everywhere including the health care system. Stigma can be defined as attitudes, feelings and behaviors that cause a negative view towards individuals or groups. The writer maintains that such attitudes and behaviors are based on stereotyping and false notions such as the view that the mentally ill are always violent. The writer argues that stigma not only destroys self-esteem and limits opportunities for the person with a mental illness such as schizophrenia, but is a major barrier to recovery. The most serious effect of stigma is social isolation; stigma condemns the mentally ill to isolation and feelings of shame. The writer notes that stigma is so prevalent and embedded in society that it is almost impossible to eradicate, but there are strategies that can be effective.
From the Paper:"The mentally ill person is not able to participate like other people in society because stigma results in the mentally ill person having diminished social status. Schumacher, Corrigan and Dejong explain how stigma related to mental illness is based on three main cues consisting of bizarre behavior, poor social skills, and little physical attractiveness. Stigma also results in discrimination on the part of employers and landlords, leaving the mentally ill with few or no opportunities for a normal life. As a result of such discrimination, many of the mentally ill are unemployed and homeless. In contrast to the stigma associated with race or gender, stigma attached to mental illness is based on the cues of labels, bizarre behavior, poor social skills, and physical appearance. Furthermore, the most intense stigma is a reaction to bizarre behavior and perceived strangeness.
"Research studies have indicated that the most effective way to eradicate stigma is through developing contact between healthy individuals and the mentally ill person."
Sample of Sources Used:
- Deegan, P. (1993). Recovering our sense of value after being labeled. Psychosocial Nursing, 31 (4), 7-11.
- Kenny, J. (2001). Cloaked in secrecy and shame. Canadian Nurse, 97 (1), 20-24.
- Maher, T, (2000). Tackling the stigma of schizophrenia. Practice Nurse, 20 (8), 466-471.
- O'Brien, S. Staying alive: A client with a chronic mental illness in an environment of domestic violence. Holistic Nursing Practice, 4 (1), 1-11.
- Pollack, L. (1996). Information seeking among people with manic-depressive illness. Journal of Nursing Scholarship, 28 (3), 259-266.
Cite this Research Paper:
Mental Health and Stigma (2008, February 29) Retrieved July 22, 2014, from http://www.academon.com/research-paper/mental-health-and-stigma-101765/
"Mental Health and Stigma" 29 February 2008. Web. 22 July. 2014. <http://www.academon.com/research-paper/mental-health-and-stigma-101765/>