Considerable stigma against mental illness: Study
SINGAPORE — An Institute of Mental Health (IMH) study has found a common perception here that those with mental illness can get better if they wanted to and that their condition is a sign of personal weakness. Researchers behind the study said this suggests “considerable” stigma towards individuals with mental illness. The stigma could hinder such individuals from seeking treatment out of fear of being associated with a disorder. The mental health literacy study spanning one year started in March last year and involved about 3,000 adult residents aged between 18 and 65. It examined how well people could recognise five common mental disorders — alcohol abuse, dementia, Major Depressive Disorder (MDD), Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and schizophrenia — and their beliefs towards these conditions. To measure stigma, researchers used scales to gauge people’s attitudes towards the individual suffering from a mental illness, as well as how willing they are to spend time with such persons.
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