Factors that Contribute to Attitudes Towards Professional Psychological Help Seeking for Mental Health Issues Among Teacher Trainees in Kenya
Mental illness including substance abuse disorders is a major concern among college student population, yet nearly half of them have no knowledge on mental health issues. In addition more than half of these students report not to have received any information on mental health or sought any help for a mental illness, causing a great magnitude of health burden. This study aims to determine factors that contribute to attitudes towards professional psychological help seeking for a mental illness. Four colleges out of the existing 20 public primary teacher colleges were conveniently sampled, and all present consenting students were recruited for the study. Two colleges formed the experimental group while the other two formed the experimental group. Baseline assessment using researcher developed demographic questionnaire, with three standardized tools of opinions about mental illness, attitudes towards professional help seeking and expectations about counseling were used to collect data. Psychoeducation was given to the experimental group, and three other evaluations using the same tools were done, one soon after the psychoeducation, third and fourth three and six months after the psychoeducation, The control group only received two other evaluations, soon after baseline and three months after baseline. This study found out that opinions about mental illness, expectations about counseling, psychoeducation, experience in teaching before coming to collage and being female gender contribute significantly to attitudes towards professional psychological help seeking for a mental illness. Main recommendation made is to include mental health education and counseling in teacher training curriculum to improve attitudes to seeking help.
Eunice Jemalel Nyavanga,
Factors that Contribute to Attitudes Towards Professional Psychological Help Seeking for Mental Health Issues Among Teacher Trainees in Kenya, American Journal of Applied Psychology.
Vol. 6, No. 6,
2017, pp. 142-146.
Hunt, J., & Eisenberg, D. (2010). Mental health problems and help-seeking behavior among college students. Journal of Adolescent Health, 46(1), 3-10. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jadohealth.2009.08.008
Zivin, K., Eisenberg, D., Gollust, S. E. & Golberstein, E. (2009). Persistence of mental health problems and needs in a college student population. Journal of Affective Disorders; 117(3): 180-185. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2009.01.001
WHO, (2002). The World Health Report –Mental Health: New Understanding, New Hope. World Health Report Press Kit.
Blanco, C., Okuda, M., Wright, C., Hasin, D. S., Grant, B. F., Liu, S. M., & Olfson, M. (2008). Mental health of college students and their non–college-attending peers: results from the national epidemiologic study on alcohol and related conditions. Archives of general psychiatry, 65(12), 1429-1437. doi: 10.1001/archpsyc.65.12.1429
Erskine, H. E., Moffitt, T. E., Copeland, W. E., Costello, E. J., Ferrari, A. J., Patton, G.,. & Scott, J. G. (2015). A heavy burden on young minds: the global burden of mental and substance use disorders in children and youth. Psychological medicine, 45(7), 1551-1563. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/S0033291714002888
Zawawi J. M. A. Psychological Help Seeking Attitudes and Personality factors among Jordanian College Students. European Journal of Social Sciences 2011; 25(4): 606-629.
Chen, R. and Mak, W. Seeking Professional Help: Etiology and beliefs about mental illness across cultures. Journal of Counseling Psychology 2008; 55: 442-450.
Eisenberg, D., Downs, M. F., Golberstein, E., & Zivin, K. (2009). Stigma and help seeking for mental health among college students. Medical Care Research and Review, 66(5), 522-541.
Marcell, A. V., & Halpern-Felsher, B. L. (2005). Adolescents’ Health Beliefs are critical in their intentions to seek Physical Care; Preventive Medicine; 41(1): 118-125. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ypmed.2004.10.016
Burnett-Zeigler, I., Walton, M. A., Ilen, M., Barry, K. L., Cermack, S. T., Zuchker, R. A., et al. (2012). Prevalcenc and Corrolatiotes of Mental Health Problems & Treatment among Adolescence Seen in Primary Care. Journal of Adolescent Health; 50(6): 559-564. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jadohealth.2011.10.005
Nyavanga & Barasa, (2016). Attitudes Towards Professional Psychological Help Seeking Among Young Adults in Kenya: Case Study of Public Teacher Training Colleges. Psychology and Behavioral Sciences; 5(3): 69-76 doi: 10.11648/j.pbs.20160503.12
Essau CA: Frequency and patterns of mental health services utilization among adolescents with anxiety and depressive disorders. Depress Anxiety. 2005, 22 (3): 130-137. 10.1002/da.20115.
Rickwood, D. J., Deane, F. P., & Wilson, C. J. (2007). When and how do young people seek professional help for mental health problems. Med J Aust, 187(7 Suppl), S35-S39.
Sawyer, M. G., Arney, F. M., Baghurst, P. A., Clark, J. J., Graetz, B. W., Kosky, R. J., & Rey, J. M. (2001). The mental health of young people in Australia: key findings from the child and adolescent component of the national survey of mental health and well-being. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 35(6), 806-814.
Mojtabai, R. (2009). Unmet need for treatment of major depression in the United States. Psychiatric Services, 60(3), 297-305.
Fox JC, Blank M, Rovnyak VG, Barnett RY: Barriers to help seeking for mental disorders in a rural impoverished population. Community Ment Health J. 2001, 37 (5): 421-436. 10.1023/A:1017580013197.
Gulliver, A., Griffiths, K. M., & Christensen, H. (2010). Perceived barriers and facilitators to mental health help seeking in young people: a systematic review. BMC psychiatry, 10(1), 113.
Andersson, L. M., Schierenbeck, I., Strumpher, J., Krantz, G., Topper, K., Backman, G., & Van Rooyen, D. (2013). Help-seeking behaviour, barriers to care and experiences of care among persons with depression in Eastern Cape, South Africa. Journal of affective disorders, 151(2), 439-448. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2013.06.022.
Cohen, J.; Struening, E. L. (1962). Opinions about mental illness in the personnel of two large mental hospitals. The Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology; 64(5): 349-360. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/h0045526
Fischer, Edward H.; Turner, John I. (1970). Orientations to seeking professional help: Development and research utility of an attitude scale. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 35(1): 79-90. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/h0029636
Tinsley, H. E. A. (1980). Expectations About Counseling— Brief form. Mukilteo, WA: Author.
Shea, M., & Yeh, C. (2008). Asian American students' cultural values, stigma, and relational self-construal: correlates of attitudes toward professional help seeking. Journal of Mental Health Counseling, 30(2), 157-172.
Nam, S. K., Choi, S. I., Lee, J. H., Lee, M. K., Kim, A. R., & Lee, S. M. (2013). Psychological factors in college students' attitudes toward seeking professional psychological help: A meta-analysis. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice; 44(1): 37-45. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/a002956
Scott, L. D., McMillen, J. C., & Snowden, L. R. (2015). Informal and formal help seeking among older Black male foster care youth and alumni. Journal of child and family studies, 24(2), 264-277. doi: 10.1007/s10826-013-9832-0
Wenjing, L., Denson, L. A., & Dorstyn, D. S. (2007), Understanding Australian University Students’ Mental Health Help-Seeking: An Empirical and Theoretical Investigation: Australian Journal of Psychology, DOI: 10.1111/ajpy.12157.
Leong, F. T., & Zachar, P. (1999). Gender and opinions about mental illness as predictors of attitudes toward seeking professional psychological help. British Journal of Guidance & Counselling, 27(1), 123-132.http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/03069889908259720
Gonzalez, J. M., Tinsley, H. E. A., & Kreuder, K. R (2002). Effects of Psychoeducational Interventions on Opinions of Mental Illness, Attitudes toward Help Seeking, and Expectations about Psychotherapy in College Students. Journal of College Student Development; 43(1): 51-63.
Taylor-Rodgers, E., & Batterham, P. J. (2014). Evaluation of an online psychoeducation intervention to promote mental health help seeking attitudes and intentions among young adults: Randomised controlled trial Journal of Affective Disorders; 168: 65-71. doi: 10.1016/j.jad.2014.06.047.
Hadlaczky, G., Hokby, S., Mkrtchian, A., Carli, V., & Wasserman, D. (2014). Mental Health First Aid is effective Public Health Intervention for Improving Knowledge, Attitudes and Behavior: A meta-analysis: International Review of Psychiatry. Psychiatry; 26(4): 467-475. DOI: 10.3109/09540261.2014.924910.
Ghafoori, B., & Korosteleva, O. (2016). A Randomized, Control Pilot Study of a single Psychoeducation Treatment for Urban, Culturally Diverse, Trauma-Exposed Adults, Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease: 204(6): 421-430. J doi: 10.1097/NMD.0000000000000512.
Kokkinos, C. M., & Stavropoulos, G. (2016). Burning out during practicum: the case of teacher trainees. Educational Psychology: An International Journal of Experimental Educational Psychology; 36(3): 548-568. Doi: 10.1080/01443410.2014.955461.
Komiya, Noboru; Good, Glenn E.; Sherrod, Nancy B. (2000). Emotional openness as a predictor of college students' attitudes toward seeking psychological help. Journal of Counseling Psychology, Vol 47(1), Jan 2000, 138-143. http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/0022-0184.108.40.206
Watsford, C., & Rickwood, D. (2014). Young people's expectations, preferences, and experiences of therapy: Effects on clinical outcome, service use, and help-seeking intentions. Clinical Psychologist, 18(1), 43-51. DOI: 10.1111/cp.12034