Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 17

Psychological distress Related Abstracts

17 The Relationship of Emotional Intelligence, Perceived Stress, Religious Coping with Psychological Distress among Afghan Students

Authors: Mustafa Jahanara


The aim of present research was to study of the relationship between emotional intelligence, perceived stress, positive religious coping with psychological distress to in a sample of undergraduate students in Polytechnic University in Kabul. One hundred and fifty-tow students (102 male, 50 female) were included in this study. All participants completed the Emotional Intelligence Scale (EIS), General Health Questionnaire (GHQ 12), Perceived Stress Scale (PSS-10), and the Brief RCOPE. The results revealed that EI was negatively associated with perceived stress and psychological distress. Also emotional intelligence was positively correlated with positive religious coping. Perceived stress was positive related with psychological distress and negatively correlated with positive religious coping. Eventually positive religious coping was significantly and negatively correlated with psychological distress. However, emotional intelligence and positive religious coping could influence on mental health.

Keywords: Psychological distress, Emotional Intelligence, perceived stress, positive religious coping

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16 Caring for Children with Intellectual Disabilities in Malawi: Parental Psychological Experiences and Needs

Authors: Charles Masulani Mwale


Background: It is argued that 85% of children with the disability live in resource-poor countries where there are few available disability services. A majority of these children, including their parents, suffer a lot as a result of the disability and its associated stigmatization, leading to a marginalized life. These parents also experience more stress and mental health problems such as depression, compared with families of normal developing children. There is little research from Africa addressing these issues especially among parents of intellectually disabled children. WHO encourages research on the impact that child with a disability have on their family and appropriate training and support to the families so that they can promote the child’s development and well-being. This study investigated the parenting experiences, mechanisms of coping with these challenges and psychosocial needs while caring for children with intellectual disabilities in both rural and urban settings of Lilongwe and Mzuzu. Methods: This is part of a larger Mixed-methods study aimed at developing a contextualized psychosocial intervention for parents of intellectually disabled children. 16 focus group discussions and four in-depth interviews were conducted with parents in catchments areas for St John of God and Children of Blessings in Mzuzu and Lilongwe cities respectively. Ethical clearance was obtained from COMREC. Data were stored in NVivo software for easy retrieval and management. All interviews were tape-recorded, transcribed and translated into English. Note-taking was performed during all the observations. Data triangulation from the interviews, note taking and the observations were done for validation and reliability. Results: Caring for intellectually disabled children comes with a number of challenges. Parents experience stigma and discrimination; fear for the child’s future; have self-blame and guilt; get coerced by neighbors to kill the disabled child; and fear violence by and to the child. Their needs include respite relief, improved access to disability services, education on disability management and financial support. For their emotional stability, parents cope by sharing with others and turning to God while other use poor coping mechanisms like alcohol use. Discussion and Recommendation: Apart from neighbors’ coercion to eliminate the child life, the findings of this study are similar to those done in other countries like Kenya and Pakistan. It is recommended that parents get educated on disability, its causes, and management to array fears of unknown. Community education is also crucial to promote community inclusiveness and correct prevailing myths associated with disability. Disability institutions ought to intensify individual as well as group counseling services to these parents. Further studies need to be done to design culturally appropriate and specific psychosocial interventions for the parents to promote their psychological resilience.

Keywords: Children, Mental Health, Psychological distress, Intellectual Disability, psychosocial interventions, psychological resilience

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15 The Role of Psychosis Proneness in the Association of Metacognition with Psychological Distress in Non-Clinical Population

Authors: Usha Barahmand, Ruhollah Heydari Sheikh Ahmad


Distress refers to an unpleasant metal state or emotional suffering marked by negative affect such as depression (e.g., lost interest; sadness; hopelessness), anxiety (e.g., restlessness; feeling tense). These negative affect have been mostly suggested to be concomitant of metal disorders such as positive psychosis symptoms and also of proneness to psychotic features in non-clinical population. Psychotic features proneness including hallucination, delusion and schizotypal traits, have been found to be associated with metacognitive beliefs. Metacognition has been conceptualized as ‘thinking about thoughts, monitoring and controlling of cognitive processes’. The aim of the current study was to investigate the role of psychosis proneness in the association of metacognitions and distress. We predicted psychosis proneness would mediate the association of metacognitive beliefs and the distress. A sample of 420 university students was randomly recruited to endorse questionnaires of the study that consisted of DASS-21questionnaire for assessing levels of distress, Cartwright–Hatton & Wells, Meta-cognitions Questionnaire (MCQ-30) for assessing metacognitive beliefs, Launay-Slade Hallucination Scale-revised (LSHS-R), Peters et al. Delusions Inventory, Schizotypal Personality Questionnaire-Brief. Conducting a bootstrapping approach in order to investigate our hypothesis, the result showed that there was no a direct association between metacognitive dimensions and psychological distress and psychosis proneness significantly mediated the association. Finding suggested that individuals with dysfunctional metacognitive beliefs experience high levels of distress if they are prone to psychosis symptoms. In other words, psychosis proneness is a path through which individuals with dysfunctional metacognitions experience high levels of psychological distress.

Keywords: metacognition, Psychological distress, non-clinical population, psychosis proneness

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14 Assets and Health: Examining the Asset-Building Theoretical Framework and Psychological Distress

Authors: Einav Srulovici, Michal Grinstein-Weiss, George Knafl, Linda Beeber, Shawn Kneipp, Barbara Mark


Background: The asset-building theoretical framework (ABTF) is acknowledged as the most complete framework thus far for depicting the relationships between asset accumulation (the stock of a household’s saved resources available for future investment) and health outcomes. Although the ABTF takes into consideration the reciprocal relationship between asset accumulation and health, no ABTF based study has yet examined this relationship. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to test the ABTF and psychological distress, focusing on the reciprocal relationship between assets accumulation and psychological distress. Methods: The study employed longitudinal data from 6,295 families from the 2001 and 2007 Panel Study of Income Dynamics data sets. Structural equation modeling (SEM) was used to test the reciprocal relationship between asset accumulation and psychological distress. Results: In general, the data displayed a good fit to the model. The longitudinal SEM found that asset accumulation significantly increased with a decreased in psychological distress over time, while psychological distress significantly increased with an increase in asset accumulation over time, confirming the existence of the hypothesized reciprocal relationship. Conclusions: Individuals who are less psychological distressed might have more energy to engage in activities, such as furthering their education or obtaining better jobs that are in turn associated with greater asset accumulation, while those who have greater assets may invest those assets in riskier investments, resulting in increased psychological distress. The confirmation of this reciprocal relationship highlights the importance of conducting longitudinal studies and testing the reciprocal relationship between asset accumulation and other health outcomes.

Keywords: Structural Equation Modeling, Psychological distress, asset-building theoretical framework, reciprocal relationship

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13 Psychological Wellbeing of Caregivers: Findings from a Large Cohort of Thai Adults

Authors: Vasoontara Yiengprugsawan, Sam-ang Seubsman


As Thais live longer, caregivers will become even more important to social and healthcare systems. Commonly reported in many low and middle‐income countries in Asia, formal social welfare services to support caregivers are lacking and informal family support will be required for all levels of care. In 2005, 87,151 open‐university adults were recruited to the Thai Cohort Study, with the majority aged between 25 and 39 years, and residing nationwide. At the 4‐year follow up in 2009 (n=60569) and the 8‐year follow‐up in 2013 (n=42785), prospective cohort participants were asked if they provide care for chronically ill, disabled, or frail family members. Among Thai cohort members reporting between 2009 and 2013, approximately 56% were not caregivers in either year, 24.5% reported providing care in 2009 only, 8.6% in 2013 only, and 10.6% reported providing care at both time points. Caregivers in the cohort reported providing financial support, help with shopping, emotional support, and assist with daily activities. Kessler 6 psychological distress scale, measured in both 2009 and 2013, was used as the primary outcome of a relationship between caregiving status and mental health. Using multivariate logistic regression, our 4‐year longitudinal findings revealed that cohort members who reported providing care at both time points were 1.4 to 1.6 times more likely to report high psychological distress than non‐caregivers, after accounting for potential covariates. With increasing needs for informal care provided by family members, the future health and social welfare system will need to provide adequate support to caregivers (e.g., respite care, clinical support and information for the family, and awareness of mental health among caregivers).

Keywords: Psychological distress, Thailand, family caregivers, prospective cohort, longitudinal study

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12 Selected Childhood Experiences, Current Psychological Status and Its Associates among Imprisoned Women in Welikada Prison, Colombo Sri Lanka

Authors: Jayathilake Wijethunga B. G. Mudiyanselage, Jeewantha Ranawaka, Nirosha Lansakara


Introduction: Women imprisonment is rising in the world. Imprisoned women have more psychological problems and more adverse childhood experiences than the general population. Female prisoners who had psychological problems had more adverse childhood experiences than the prisoners who did not have psychological problems. Most of the imprisoned women are mothers. Mothers are the principal carer for the children. The psychological status of imprisoned female is worth seeking along with its associates since this is a group of women who need others assistance to make their life adjusted. Any intervention that could uplift their psychological wellbeing would make their life better if they are to be released out of the prison. Since there are no studies done in Sri Lanka to study the imprisoned women psychological wellbeing and their childhood experiences, it is important to study on this to find the magnitude of the problem in Sri Lanka. Methodology: A descriptive cross-sectional study was done at the Welikada Prison, Colombo, among the imprisoned women. 273 imprisoned women were selected using simple random sampling technique. Using interviewer administered questionnaire 270 women were interviewed. Three women did not consent for the study. Frequencies of the selected socio demographic characteristics and selected childhood experiences calculated. GHQ 30 questionnaire was used to assess the psychological distress. Odds ratio was used to calculate the associations between the psychological distress and the selected socio demographic characteristics, selected childhood experiences. Results: Response rate was 98.9%. Mean age of the imprisoned women were 41.28years (SD ±11.86yrs) and Most of women were within the age group of 35-49 years (38.1%). Of them 68.5% were currently married and majority had at least one child. (86.3%). House hold member’s smoking (58.5%) and alcohol (40.4%) use was the commonest adverse childhood experience experienced by the imprisoned women. Nearly one fourth (22.6%) of the imprisoned women had attempted suicide during their life and more than half (55.7%) of them had attempted before the age of 18 years. Similarly of the 258 women who had been sexually active during their life, half (50.0%) of the women had exposed to sexual activities during first eighteen years of life and mean age at first sexual exposure was 19.2 (SD±4.86) years. Nearly three forth (73.7%) of imprisoned women were psychologically distressed in the study sample. Being a women of aged less than 25 years((OR=4.51, 95% CI=1.035-19.64)),previous history of suicidal attempts(OR=2.10,95%CI =1.00-4.41), not having enough foods to eat( OR=2.97, 1.009-8.75) and absence of someone to tell worries (OR=0.355, 95% CI =0.113-0.945) during childhood were significantly associate with psychological distress. Conclusion: Nearly three forth of the imprisoned women were psychologically distressed and younger age, history of suicidal attempts, the absence of someone to tell their worries and not having enough food to eat during childhood were risk factors for psychological distress. Recommendation: Need to strengthen the rehabilitation and mental health services to the imprisoned women.

Keywords: Psychological distress, Prisoners, adverse childhood experiences, imprisoned women

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11 Women's Sexual Experience in Pakistan: Associations of Patriarchy and Psychological Distress

Authors: Sana Tahir, Haya Fatimah


Sexuality is a social construct which is considered as the most confidential affair among individuals where women tend to refrain themselves more from sexually explicit behavior than men. Patriarchy has an elevated influence on the expression of female sexuality. While women’s sexual experiences are suppressed men are entitled to pleasure themselves according to their desire. The purpose of this study is to explore how the internalization of patriarchy affects women’s sexuality. Similarly, it was investigated how women sexuality is associated with psychological distress. The sample consisted of 100(age 20-40) married women. Participants were selected through a combination of convenient and snowball sampling. Women were asked to provide data regarding patriarchal beliefs, sexual awareness and DAS (depression, anxiety, and stress). Pearson Product Moment Correlation Analyze was conducted to examine the nature of the relationship between patriarchal beliefs, sexual awareness and psychological distress in married women. There is a significant negative relation between sexual awareness and patriarchal beliefs (r=-.391, p<.001). There also lies a significant negative relation between sexual awareness and depression, anxiety, stress (r=-.359, p<.001) (r=.301, p=.002) (r=-.221, p=.027). The results reveal that women with strong patriarchal beliefs have less sexual awareness in terms of sexual consciousness, sexual monitoring, sexual assertiveness and sexual appeal consciousness. Similarly, women with strong patriarchal beliefs and less sexual awareness have high levels of depression, anxiety, and stress.

Keywords: Psychological distress, female sexuality, patriarchy, sexual awareness

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10 The Relationship Between Quality of Life, Psychological Distress and Coping Strategies of Persons Living with HIV/AIDS in Cairo, Egypt

Authors: Sumaia Jawad, Shalaweh Salem, Walid Kamal, Nicolette Roman


Background: HIV patients have many social problems like depression, which adversely affects their quality of life. HIV infection is linked to psychological distress such as anxiety. In terms of coping styles, avoidant emotion-focused strategies such as fatalism, wishful thinking and self-blame are associated with higher levels of psychological distress in persons with HIV. In Cairo, Egypt current services are not adapted to provide advice and psychological support to people living with HIV to help them develop problem-solving skills to cope with the stress of living with HIV. Yet, no studies have examined the relationship between quality of life, psychological distress and coping strategies of persons living with HIV/AIDS in Egypt. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between quality of life, psychological distress and coping strategies of persons living with HIV/AIDS in Cairo, Egypt. Methods: This study used a quantitative methodology with a cross-sectional correlational design. The data was collected using: Quality of Life Enjoyment and Satisfaction Questionnaire (Q-LES-Q), Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale (DASS) and Cope Inventory. The sample consisted of 202 participants who accessed the National AIDS Program (NAP). The data was analysed using the Statistical Program for Social Science V23 (SPSS). Results: The results show that psychological distress and certain coping styles such as substance abuse and behavioural disengagement negatively predict the quality of life of patients with HIV/AIDS. Positive predictors included coping styles such as active coping, self-distraction, venting, positive reframing, humor, acceptance, and religion. Conclusions: It would probably be best to reduce psychological distress and increase coping styles in order to improve the quality of life of patients with HIV/AIDS.

Keywords: Quality of Life, HIV/AIDS, Psychological distress, coping strategies

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9 The Link between Childhood Maltreatment and Psychological Distress: The Mediation and Moderation Roles of Cognitive Distortion, Alexithymia, and Eudemonic Well-Being

Authors: Siqi Fang, Man Cheung Chung


This study examined the inter-relationship between childhood maltreatment, cognitive distortion, alexithymia, eudemonic well-being, and psychological distress. One hundred and eighty-two university students participated in the study and completed an online survey comprising the Childhood Trauma Questionnaire, Cognitive Distortion Scale, Toronto Alexithymia Scale, Psychological Well-Being Scale, and General Health Questionnaire-28. Hierarchical multiple regression analysis showed that child maltreatment, perceptions of hopelessness and helplessness, preoccupation with danger, personal growth, and purpose in life predicted psychological distress. However, alexithymia was not a significant predictor. Further analysis using the regression models with bootstrapping procedure showed that feeling hopeless, helpless and preoccupation with danger mediated the path between child maltreatment and psychological distress. Meanwhile, coping with beliefs in personal growth and life purpose moderated the mediation effects of distorted cognition on psychological distress. To conclude, childhood maltreatment is associated with psychological distress. This relationship is influenced by people’s perceptions of life being hopeless, helpless or dangerous. At the same time, the effect of hopelessness, helplessness, and feelings of danger also depends on the degree of using coping strategies of positive psychological functioning.

Keywords: Psychological distress, alexithymia, childhood maltreatment, cognitive distortion, eudemonic well-being

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8 Predictors of the Self-Reported Likelihood of Seeking Social Worker Help among People with Physical Disabilities

Authors: Maya Kagan, Michal Itzick, Patricia Tal-Katz


Social workers hold a variety of roles and practices, and one of these involves the care, treatment, and rehabilitation of disabled people. The current study assesses the association between demographic factors, attitudes towards social workers, the stigma attached to seeking social worker help, perceived social support, and psychological distress - and the self-reported likelihood of seeking social worker help, among people with physical disabilities (PWPD) in Israel. Data collection utilized structured questionnaires, administered to a sample of 435 PWPD. Statistical analyses were done using SPSS software. The findings suggest that women, older respondents, people with more positive attitudes towards social workers, with higher levels of psychological distress and of social support, and with a lower level of stigma, reported a greater likelihood of seeking social worker help. The study's conclusion is that there are certain avoidance factors among PWPD that might discourage them from seeking professional social worker help. Therefore, it is important that social workers identify these factors and develop interventions aimed at encouraging PWPD to seek professional social worker help in case of need, and also develop practices adjusted to PWPD's unique needs.

Keywords: Psychological distress, stigma, perceived social support, attitudes towards social workers, people with physical disabilities, seeking help

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7 Self-Esteem, Self-Efficacy and Psychological Distress among the High School Teachers in Afghanistan

Authors: Mustafa Jahanara


The purpose of the research was to study the relationship between self-esteem, self-Efficacy with psychological distress in the high school teachers. A total of 245 teachers (92 male and 153 female) in the high school of Kabul and Mazar-e-Sharif from Afghanistan completed inventories General Self-Efficacy, Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale, and General Health Questionnaire-12 and that assessed their Self-Efficacy, self-esteem with psychological distress. Correlational analysis showed that self-efficacy and self-esteem were significantly and positively correlated with each other. The results of the study indicated that psychological distress is negatively related to self-esteem, and self-efficacy. However, the findings suggest that self-esteem, and self-efficacy could influence on mental health.

Keywords: Psychological distress, Self-efficacy, self-esteem, high school teachers

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6 Optimism, Hope and Mental Health: Optimism, Hope, Psychological Well-Being and Psychological Distress among Students, University of Pune, India

Authors: Mustafa Jahanara


The purpose of the current study is to examine the relationships between hope, optimism and mental health (psychological well-being and psychological distress) among students. A total of 222 students (132 males and 90 females) at the University of Pune from India completed inventories Revision of the Life Orientation Test (LOT-R), the Trait Hope Scale (THS) and the Mental Health Inventory (MHI) that assessed their optimism, hope and psychological well-being and psychological distress. The results of the study showed that optimism and hope were significantly correlated with each other. Optimism is positively related to psychological well-being and optimism is negatively related to psychological distress. Also, hope was positively related to psychological well-being. However, the findings suggest that optimism and hope could influence on mental health.

Keywords: Psychological distress, psychological well-being, hope, optimism

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5 Legume and Nuts Consumption in Relation to Depression and Anxiety in Iranian Adults

Authors: Ahmad Esmaillzadeh, Javad Anjom-Shoae, Omid Sadeghi,


Background: Although considerable research has been devoted to the link between consumption of legume and nuts and metabolic abnormalities, few studies have examined legume and nuts consumption in relation to psychological disorders. Objective: The current study aimed to examine the association of legume and nuts consumption with depression, anxiety and psychological distress in Iranian adults. Methods: This cross-sectional study was carried out among 3172 adult participants aged 18-55 years. Assessment of legume and nuts consumption was conducted using a validated dish-based 106-item semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire. The Iranian validated version of Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) was used to examine psychological health. Scores of 8 or more on either subscale in the questionnaire were considered to indicate the presence of depression or anxiety. Data on psychological distress were collected through the use of General Health Questionnaire (GHQ), in which the score of 4 or more was considered as having psychological distress. Results: Mean age of participants was 36.5±7.9 years. Compared with the lowest quintile, men in the highest quintile of legume and nuts consumption had lower odds of anxiety; such that after adjusting for potential confounding variables, men in the top quintile of legume and nuts consumption were 66% less likely to be anxious than those in the bottom quintile (OR: 0.34; 95% CI: 0.14-0.82). Such relationship was not observed among women. We failed to find any significant association between legume plus nuts consumption and depression or psychological distress after adjustment for potential confounders. Conclusion: We found that consumption of legume and nuts was associated with lower odds of anxiety in men, but not in women. No significant association was seen between consumption of legume and nuts and odds of depression or psychological disorder. Further prospective studies are required to confirm these findings.

Keywords: Depression, Anxiety, Psychological distress, legumes, nuts

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4 The Role of Brooding and Reflective as Subtypes of Rumination toward Psychological Distress in University of Indonesia First-Year Undergraduate Students

Authors: Hepinda Fajari Nuharini, Sugiarti A. Musabiq


Background: Various and continuous pressures that exceed individual resources can cause first-year undergraduate college students to experience psychological distress. Psychological distress can occur when individuals use rumination as cognitive coping strategies. Rumination is one of the cognitive coping strategies that can be used by individuals to respond to psychological distress that causes individuals to think about the causes and consequences of events that have occurred. Rumination had two subtypes, such as brooding and reflective. Therefore, the purpose of this study was determining the role of brooding and reflective as subtypes of rumination toward psychological distress in University of Indonesia first-year undergraduate students. Methods: Participants of this study were 403 University of Indonesia first-year undergraduate students aged between 18 and 21 years old. Psychological distress measured using self reporting questionnaire (SRQ-20) and brooding and reflective as subtypes of rumination measured using Ruminative Response Scale - Short Version (RRS - Short Version). Results: Binary logistic regression analyses showed that 22.8% of the variation in psychological distress could be explained by the brooding and reflective as subtypes of rumination, while 77.2% of the variation in psychological distress could be explained by other factors (Nagelkerke R² = 0,228). The results of the binary logistic regression analysis also showed rumination subtype brooding is a significant predictor of psychological distress (b = 0,306; p < 0.05), whereas rumination subtype reflective is not a significant predictor of psychological distress (b = 0,073; p > 0.05). Conclusion: The findings of this study showed a positive relationship between brooding and psychological distress indicates that a higher level of brooding will predict higher psychological distress. Meanwhile, a negative relationship between reflective and psychological distress indicates a higher level of reflective will predict lower psychological distress in University of Indonesia first-year undergraduate students. Added Values: The psychological distress among first-year undergraduate students would then have an impact on student academic performance. Therefore, the results of this study can be used as a reference for making preventive action to reduce the percentage and impact of psychological distress among first-year undergraduate students.

Keywords: Psychological distress, brooding as subtypes of rumination, first-year undergraduate students, reflective as subtypes of rumination

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3 The Comparison of the Effect of Mindfulness-Based Relaxation Training and Trans Cranial Electrical Stimulation and Their Combination on Decreasing Physiological Distress in Patients with Type-2 Diabetes

Authors: Gholam Hossein Javanmard, Roghayeh Mohammadi Garegozlo


The present study was a randomized three-group double-blind clinical trial with repeated measures designs which aimed to determine the pure effect and combined effect of mindfulness based-relaxation (MBR) technique and Transcranial Electrical Simulation (tCES) on psychological distress decreasing of patients with type-2 diabetes. The sample of the study consisted of 30 patients with type-2 diabetes who were selected from the Diabetes Association of Bonab city in Iran. The participants were matched and then randomly assigned to the three groups of 10 subjects (MBR, CES, MBR+CES). The subjects received interventions related to their group in 10 individual sessions. Pre-test, post-test, and one-month follow-up were conducted using DASS-42. Analysis of variance with repeated measures showed a significant change in psychological distress. Multivariate covariance analysis and the paired interpersonal comparative test of Ben Foruni indicated that both interventions of MBR and CES have a similar effect on psychological distress decreasing in the post-test and follow-up phase. But, the combined therapy of MBR+CES was more efficient, and it had a more stable effect. However, all three interventions, especially combined intervention of MBR+CES, as efficient and stable treatment, are suggested for improving the psychological status of diabetic patients.

Keywords: Psychological distress, Type 2 diabetes, mindfulness based-relaxation, transcranial electrical simulation

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2 A Scoping Study and Stakeholder Consultation on Mental Health Determinants among Arab Immigrants and Refugees in North America

Authors: Sarah Elshahat, Tina Moffat


Suboptimal mental health is a considerable global public health challenge that leads to considerable inequalities worldwide. Newcomers are at elevated risk for developing mental health issues as a result of social exclusion, stigmatization, racism, unequal employment opportunities, and discrimination. The problem can be especially serious amongst Arabic-speaking immigrants and refugees (ASIR) whose mental wellness may have already been affected by exposure to political violence, persecution, hunger or war in their countries of origin. A scoping review was conducted to investigate pre- and post-migration mental health determinants amongst ASIR in North America (the U.S. and Canada), who are a rapidly growing population in both regions. Pertinent peer-reviewed papers and grey literature were located through a systematic search of five electronic databases (Medline, Embase, PsycINFO, Anthropology Plus, and Sociology Database). A stakeholder consultation was implemented to validate the analyzed findings of the included 44 studies. About 80% of the studies were carried out in the US, underscoring a lack of Canadian ASIR-mental health research. A gap in qualitative, mixed-method, and longitudinal research was detected, where approximately two-thirds of the studies adopted a cross-sectional method. Pre-migration determinants of mental health were related to the political unrest, violence and armed conflict in the Arab world, increasing post-traumatic stress disorder and psychological distress levels among ASIR. English language illiteracy and generational variations in acculturation patterns were major post-migration mental health triggering factors. Exposure to domestic violence, stigmatization, poverty, racialization, and harassment were significant post-migration mental health determinants that stem from social inequalities, triggering depression, and distress amongst ASIR. Family conflicts linked to child-rearing and gendered norms were considered as both pre- and post-migration mental health triggering factors. Most post-migration mental health protective factors were socio-culturally related and included the maintenance of positive ethnic identity, faith, family support, and community cohesion. Individual resilience, articulated as self-esteem and hope, was a significant negative predictor of depression and psychological distress among ASIR. Community-engaged, mixed-methods, and longitudinal studies are required to address the current gap in mental health research among ASIR in North America. A more thorough determination of potential mental health triggers and protective factors would help inform the development of mental wellness and resilience-promoting programs that are culturally sensitive to ASIR. On the policy level, the Health in All Policies framework of the World Health Organization can be potentially useful for addressing social and health inequalities among ASIR, reducing mental health challenges.

Keywords: Depression, Resilience, Post-traumatic Stress Disorder, Psychological distress

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1 Understanding Psychological Distress and Protection Issues among Children Associated with Armed Groups

Authors: Grace Onubedo


The primary objective of this research study is to contribute to and deepen the understanding of the realities and conditions for which children recruited by violent extremist organisations in Nigeria live, as well as ascertain the state of their mental health following their reunification with either family or protection workers. The research is intended to contribute to a more focused child protection programming agenda for children associated with armed forces and groups in Nigeria and the wider conflict setting. The extent to which violence has affected the psychological well-being and mental health of children abducted and exposed to activities of Violent Extremist groups remains a largely empirical question. This research attempts to answer the following research questions with the aim of providing further evidences for informed programming: I. What are the demographic characteristics of children associated with armed groups? II. What is the state of their mental health? III. What is the relationship between their background and their mental health?

Keywords: Children, Psychological distress, Counterterrorism, psychosocial support, armed groups

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