Abstract

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Abstract

Perception towards Mental Illness in Southern Tamil Nadu-A Cross Sectional Study

Author:Krishnaleela G, Siva P M, Christina Mary Jose, Deepak Kabilan, Chitra P, Dharsini G V, Dhivyabharathi S B

Keywords:Psychiatric disorders, Perception, Tamil Nadu, BMI scale

Type:Original Article

Abstract:"Background: Psychiatric disorders are widely considered as a major contributor to the global burden of diseases worldwide. Psychiatric pa-tients are subjected to cultural stere-otypes and negative attitude by gen-eral population. This study aims to assess the perception towards men-tal illness among people of Muk-kudal, Tirunelveli district, Tamil Nadu. Methods: This is a cross-sectional survey conducted among 250 peo-ple aged above 18 years residing in Mukkudal village of Tirunelveli dis-trict, Tamil Nadu. Questionnaire including basic demographic in-formation, BMI scale was used to assess the perception among gen-eral population. Results: Out of 21 questions people were found to have poor perception towards 10 questions (>50%).72% of people were found to believe that it is embarrassing to have a mentally ill person in their family.People be-longing to the age group 40- 50; fe-male by sex; Christian by religion; positive family history for mental illness; socio-economic class were found to have poor perception to-wards mental illness. Conclusions: Creating awareness using film stars and Celebrities may help to improve the perception among lower socio economic clas-ses. Strategies to increase social con-tact of public with people having mental illness could be considered in the implementation of anti- stig-ma programs."