Indian Journal of PsychiatryIndian Journal of Psychiatry
Home | About us | Current Issue | Archives | Ahead of Print | Submission | Instructions | Subscribe | Advertise | Contact | Login 
    Users online: 2555 Small font sizeDefault font sizeIncrease font size Print this article Email this article Bookmark this page
Search Again
 Table of Contents
 Similar in PUBMED
   Search Pubmed for
   Search in Google Scholar for
 Related articles
 Citation Manager
 Article Access Statistics
 Reader Comments
 Email Alert
 Add to My List
 * Requires registration (Free)

 Article Access Statistics
    PDF Downloaded531    
    Comments [Add]    
    Cited by others 28    

Recommend this journal

Year : 2011  |  Volume : 53  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 234-238

Help-seeking behavior of patients with mental health problems visiting a tertiary care center in North India

Department of Psychiatry, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Ansari Nagar, New Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
Rakesh K Chadda
Department of Psychiatry, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Ansari Nagar, New Delhi - 110 029
Login to access the Email id

Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0019-5545.86814

Rights and Permissions

Background: Patients with mental health problems in the nonwestern world seek help from a variety of sources, such as the family physicians, psychiatrists, psychologists, traditional faith-healers, or alternative medicine practitioners. Understanding the help-seeking behavior is important from the public health perspective. Materials and Methods: Two hundred new patients visiting a psychiatric outpatient service at a tertiary care hospital were interviewed on a semi-structured questionnaire for various services contacted by them for their mental health problems. Results: Psychiatrists were the first choice in 45% of the cases followed by nonpsychiatric physicians and religious faith healers. Important reasons to seek help from different sources included easy accessibility, belief in the system, or particular healer and good reputation. Mean duration of treatment varied from 2.35 months with the alternative system practitioners to 16.63 months with the psychiatrists. The mean expenditure per visit to a service was highest for the nonpsychiatric physician and lowest for alternative system practitioners. Conclusion: Patients with mental health problems seek help from psychiatrists, nonpsychiatric physicians, faith healers, alternative system practitioners, and traditional faith healers for multiple reasons. It is important to sensitize various nonpsychiatric physicians with early identification and optimum management of mental disorders.



Print this article         Email this article