Attitudes towards mental disorders and psychiatric treatment--changes over time in a Swedish population.
2008 (English)In: Nordic Journal of Psychiatry, ISSN 0803-9488, E-ISSN 1502-4725, Vol. 62, no 3, 192-7 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Over the years a lot of research of attitudes towards mental disorders, towards people with mental illness and towards psychiatric services and treatment have shown a persistent negative attitude. There are, however, few studies on changes over time. The aim of this study was to compare responses to a questionnaire on attitudes towards mental disorders and psychiatric patients and the perception of psychiatric treatment in a community in northern Sweden in 1976 and 2003. In 1976 a random sample of 391 persons 18-70 years of age were asked and in 2003 a new sample of 500 persons from the same community were approached with the same questions. There are considerable changes over time. In 2003, almost 90% agree to the statement that mental illness harms the reputation more than physical illness, compared with 50% in 1976. In 2003, 51% agreed to the statement "Most people with mental disorders commit violent acts more than others" compared with 24% in 1976. There is an apparent ambivalence towards psychiatric treatment. Whilst 88% would advice a person with mental problems to contact a psychiatrist, still 26% would not like themselves to be referred to a psychiatrist. We argue that improving treatment methods is as important as changing attitudes through accurate information.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2008. Vol. 62, no 3, 192-7 p.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-41010DOI: 10.1080/08039480801962855PubMedID: 18609028OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-41010DiVA: diva2:404200