Readiness to change and barriers to treatment seeking in college students with a mental disorder

Edel Ennis, Margaret McLafferty, EK Murray, Coral Lapsley, AJ Bjourson, C Armour, B Bunting, SD Murphy, Siobhan O'Neill

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: College students have high prevalence of mental disorders and suicidal thoughts and behaviours, and low rates of treatment uptake. This study assesses treatment access, intentions to seek help, and perceived barriers to help-seeking, considering gender and suicidal thoughts or behaviours (STBs) as predictors. Methods: Data is from the Ulster University Student Wellbeing study (2015) conducted in Northern Ireland (NI), as part of the WHO World Mental Health Surveys International College Student Project. Participants are 392 new college entrants (162 males (41.3%)/230 females (58.7%)), who all reported some lifetime mental disorder or STBs. Results: Receipt of treatment was low (37.8%), particularly among males and those with no STBs. Males were less likely to intend to access external professional services and were less likely than females to rate embarrassment (OR = 0.60) or worry about being treated differently (OR = 0.63) as important reasons for not seeking treatment. Those with STBs rated wanting to handle things on their own as a more important barrier those with no STBs (OR = 0.55 for non STBs group) and rated being unsure where to go as a less important barrier than those with no STBs (OR = 1.80 for non STBs group). Limitations: Data is correlational and concerns lifetime criteria for mental disorder, with no consideration of current mental status nor disorder type. Conclusions: These findings have implications for the active screening and intervention for vulnerable college students, particularly males and those with mental disorders but no STBs.

LanguageEnglish
Pages428-434
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Affective Disorders
Volume252
Early online date9 Apr 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2019

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Mental Disorders
Students
Northern Ireland
Therapeutics
Health Surveys
Mental Health

Keywords

  • treatment; mental health; suicidal thoughts and behaviours (STBs); barriers; college students; gender
  • Suicidal thoughts and behaviours (STBs)
  • Treatment
  • Barriers
  • Mental health disorders
  • College students
  • Gender

Cite this

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abstract = "Background: College students have high prevalence of mental disorders and suicidal thoughts and behaviours, and low rates of treatment uptake. This study assesses treatment access, intentions to seek help, and perceived barriers to help-seeking, considering gender and suicidal thoughts or behaviours (STBs) as predictors. Methods: Data is from the Ulster University Student Wellbeing study (2015) conducted in Northern Ireland (NI), as part of the WHO World Mental Health Surveys International College Student Project. Participants are 392 new college entrants (162 males (41.3{\%})/230 females (58.7{\%})), who all reported some lifetime mental disorder or STBs. Results: Receipt of treatment was low (37.8{\%}), particularly among males and those with no STBs. Males were less likely to intend to access external professional services and were less likely than females to rate embarrassment (OR = 0.60) or worry about being treated differently (OR = 0.63) as important reasons for not seeking treatment. Those with STBs rated wanting to handle things on their own as a more important barrier those with no STBs (OR = 0.55 for non STBs group) and rated being unsure where to go as a less important barrier than those with no STBs (OR = 1.80 for non STBs group). Limitations: Data is correlational and concerns lifetime criteria for mental disorder, with no consideration of current mental status nor disorder type. Conclusions: These findings have implications for the active screening and intervention for vulnerable college students, particularly males and those with mental disorders but no STBs.",
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Readiness to change and barriers to treatment seeking in college students with a mental disorder. / Ennis, Edel; McLafferty, Margaret; Murray, EK; Lapsley, Coral; Bjourson, AJ; Armour, C; Bunting, B; Murphy, SD; O'Neill, Siobhan.

In: Journal of Affective Disorders, Vol. 252, 01.06.2019, p. 428-434.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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AU - Ennis, Edel

AU - McLafferty, Margaret

AU - Murray, EK

AU - Lapsley, Coral

AU - Bjourson, AJ

AU - Armour, C

AU - Bunting, B

AU - Murphy, SD

AU - O'Neill, Siobhan

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N2 - Background: College students have high prevalence of mental disorders and suicidal thoughts and behaviours, and low rates of treatment uptake. This study assesses treatment access, intentions to seek help, and perceived barriers to help-seeking, considering gender and suicidal thoughts or behaviours (STBs) as predictors. Methods: Data is from the Ulster University Student Wellbeing study (2015) conducted in Northern Ireland (NI), as part of the WHO World Mental Health Surveys International College Student Project. Participants are 392 new college entrants (162 males (41.3%)/230 females (58.7%)), who all reported some lifetime mental disorder or STBs. Results: Receipt of treatment was low (37.8%), particularly among males and those with no STBs. Males were less likely to intend to access external professional services and were less likely than females to rate embarrassment (OR = 0.60) or worry about being treated differently (OR = 0.63) as important reasons for not seeking treatment. Those with STBs rated wanting to handle things on their own as a more important barrier those with no STBs (OR = 0.55 for non STBs group) and rated being unsure where to go as a less important barrier than those with no STBs (OR = 1.80 for non STBs group). Limitations: Data is correlational and concerns lifetime criteria for mental disorder, with no consideration of current mental status nor disorder type. Conclusions: These findings have implications for the active screening and intervention for vulnerable college students, particularly males and those with mental disorders but no STBs.

AB - Background: College students have high prevalence of mental disorders and suicidal thoughts and behaviours, and low rates of treatment uptake. This study assesses treatment access, intentions to seek help, and perceived barriers to help-seeking, considering gender and suicidal thoughts or behaviours (STBs) as predictors. Methods: Data is from the Ulster University Student Wellbeing study (2015) conducted in Northern Ireland (NI), as part of the WHO World Mental Health Surveys International College Student Project. Participants are 392 new college entrants (162 males (41.3%)/230 females (58.7%)), who all reported some lifetime mental disorder or STBs. Results: Receipt of treatment was low (37.8%), particularly among males and those with no STBs. Males were less likely to intend to access external professional services and were less likely than females to rate embarrassment (OR = 0.60) or worry about being treated differently (OR = 0.63) as important reasons for not seeking treatment. Those with STBs rated wanting to handle things on their own as a more important barrier those with no STBs (OR = 0.55 for non STBs group) and rated being unsure where to go as a less important barrier than those with no STBs (OR = 1.80 for non STBs group). Limitations: Data is correlational and concerns lifetime criteria for mental disorder, with no consideration of current mental status nor disorder type. Conclusions: These findings have implications for the active screening and intervention for vulnerable college students, particularly males and those with mental disorders but no STBs.

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