Help Seeking Behaviors

428 Words2 Pages
Over the past several decades, there have been numerous studies conducted that have shown the ethnic/racial disparities in relation to the underutilization of mental health services in the United States. The four minority groups that display the most prevalent underutilization of mental health services are Latinos, African Americans, Native Americans, and Asians (Whaley & Davis, 2007). There are numerous explanations for this matter including the help-seeking behaviors adopted by certain cultural groups, acculturative stress and language, and religious or spiritual beliefs that are adverse to treatment. Help-Seeking Behavior Since the beginnings of the mental health field, many American’s have affixed a stigma to those who seek out treatment. Over time such feelings have lessened, although still very much alive, leading to an increased number of individuals pursing professional help. Even though this shift has been taking place throughout the country, it has yet to become a cross-cultural opinion. This is especially true among Muslim and Asian cultures that do not believe there is a need for counseling outside of the family. Therefore understanding the patterns and reasoning behind help-seeking behaviors provides insight into client expectations,…show more content…
An example of this is seen in a 2010 study that equated the number of times Chinese immigrants that had been diagnosed with a perpetual mental illness saw a psychiatric in contrast to a comparison group. Results showed that Chinese immigrants were notably less likely to continue psychiatric care, even after being made aware of their mental health diagnosis, than the comparison group (Chen, Kazanjian, Wong, & Goldner, 2010). Therefore it can be asserted that Chinese Americans may also be less likely to seek other types of counseling that do not aim to diagnose such as vocational, couples, or family
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