Barrier to Treatment in Patients with Neurotic, Stress Related and Somatoform Disorders: Study from A Tertiary Centre of North India
Background: Psychiatric disorders are highly prevalent and also the leading causes of disability worldwide. Because of multiple factors playing as barriers in help seeking many people who might benefit from the treatment do not obtain it. Data regarding common mental disorders is even more lacking. Methods: Present study was undertaken to assess various treatment barriers affecting help seeking behavior in 156 patients of “neurotic, stress related and somatoform disorders” who were assessed on various tools. The study sample was divided in Aware and Unaware group on the basis of their awareness about psychiatric disorder at the time of onset/initial stages of illness. Results: Inability to recognize patient’s behavioral problem by family members and lack of treatment facility/ resource were important barrier to care. Prevalent nonscientific etiological belief (e.g. supernatural phenomenon, a form of worry or tension) in society also delayed treatment seeking. The observations of present study have helped in revealing the barriers in treatment seeking for patients of neurotic and stress related disorders. Raising awareness about these disorders in community and making psychiatric easily accessible to general population will be helpful in overcoming these barriers.
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