Intergenerational and cross-cultural differences in emotional wellbeing, mental health service utilisation, treatment-seeking preferences and acceptability of psychological treatments for Arab Australians

Rony Kayrouz*, Blake F. Dear, Luke Johnston, Liliane Keyrouz, Edmond Nehme, Roy Laube, Nickolai Titov

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

21 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: Little is known about the intergenerational and cross-cultural differences in emotional wellbeing and acceptability of psychological treatments for Arab Australians. Aim: To contribute to the emerging data about the mental health status and needs of Arab Australians. Method: An Internet survey examined psychological distress and functional impairment as measured by the Kessler 10 Item scale (K-10) and the Sheehan Disability Scale (SDS) among Arab Australians. Additional questions enquired about their help-seeking behaviours, barriers to accessing psychological treatments and preferences for delivery of psychological treatments. A total of 252 participants were recruited through public talks, media and online promotions. Results: Forty-three percent of the respondents reported moderate-to-severe functional impairment (M = 9.5; standard deviation (SD) = 1.8), 32% reported high psychological distress (M = 28.5; SD = 5.4) and 30% were born overseas. Firstgeneration Arab Australians experiencing high psychological distress (i.e. K-10 ≥ 22), reported a greater preference for Internet-delivered treatment when compared to their second-generation counterparts. Only 18% of the sample reported seeking help from a mental health professional in the past year. The significant barriers reported by respondents with high psychological distress were poor mental health literacy, lack of time and stigma. Respondents preferred face-to-face (90%) over Internet-delivered treatment (55%). Finally, Arab Australians experienced higher psychological distress and underutilised mental health services when compared to the Australian population. Conclusion: Targeted public health campaigns that make culturally relevant interventions such as modifying existing Internet-delivered treatment for Arab Australians may reduce barriers and increase treatment options for this population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)484-491
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Social Psychiatry
Volume61
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 28 Aug 2015

Keywords

  • Arab Australians
  • Barriers, help-seeking preferences
  • Cross-cultural
  • Intergenerational
  • Internet-delivered treatments
  • Mental health service utilization
  • Psychological distress

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