The Importance Of Spirituality In Mental Health

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Mental health is crucial for all of us as physical health. Mental illness and neurological disorders account for 10-15% of the global burden of disease worldwide, and a quarter of the years lived with disability (WHO 2007). At least 1 in 10 of the adult population has a mental disorder at any one time, but many suffer in silence and only a few of those who need treatment get it (WHO, 2008).A number of factors contribute to this situation including stigma at all levels, inadequate knowledge of the condition in patient, family, community and health professionals and inadequate resource to meet the needs of the clients. The situation is worse in low income countries like Kenya. In Kenya, mental and behavioral disorders account for 1.5% of all…show more content…
Equally, another fifty six (56%) of the primary school level respondents seek traditional healers and herbalist treatment before taking their spouses to hospital. This findings are in line with several studies which have been done to outline the importance of spirituality in mental illness. Spirituality may help you feel connected to something bigger than yourself. It may help you to make sense of your experiences (Culliford & Johnson, 2003). Also, Spirituality/religion serves important roles in coping, survival and maintaining overall wellbeing within African cultures and communities, especially when diagnosed with a chronic disease (Array et al 2016). Many of the Kenyan communities believe in the power of God as a source of hope and hence this can be used to explain why the large percentage of people seek spiritual assistance often in the course of their spouses’ mental illness. There also exist cultural and spiritual practices in some communities where members are not allowed to seek any formal treatments for any illness condition, including mental illness. These practices exist in members of spiritual cults like Dini Ya Musambwa and Lost Israel Family. Rather than seeking formal health care, they seek supernatural healing from individuals who proclaim to have supernatural healing…show more content…
All respondents reported that they invest a lot of time in the care of their mentally ill spouses. Other effects with high prevalence included monetary expenditure, lost work time, lack of privacy, feeling of desperation, worry, sadness, feeling of shame and guilt, lack of rest, reduced leisure activities, feelings of humiliation and exhaustion. These findings are similar to another study by Szmukleret et al (1996) who found out that families are more actively involved in the long term care of their severely mentally ill relatives. Hence, the caregivers’ experiences encompass distress, stigma, worry, shame and

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