Mental Health of the Latinx Community in the United States

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2023-04-20

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Abstract

Recent spark in political activism for minority communities in combination with social de-stigmatization of mental health has shined light on negative mental health outcomes for minority communities in the United States. Literature has found that the Latinx community faces diminished mental health due to social, political, and economic pressures, and furthermore the need for additional investigation into mitigation tactics of this discrepancy. This analysis first describes five factors which impact mental health of the Latinx community: mental health literacy, stigma surrounding mental health, acculturative stress, discrimination, and financial stress. As young adulthood is pivotal in an individual’s mental health trajectory, the paper describes the study which aims to understand the psychological stress Latinx college students experience as compared to their white counterparts at a prestigious university in the United States. Participants included 67 students from Duke University who voluntarily participated in an online survey including the full Brief Symptom Inventory (BSI). Results in this study found no statistically significant difference amongst BSI and Global Severity Index (GSI) scores of Latinx and White participants. Additionally, no statistical significance was found in the difference between Latinx and White participant anxiety and depression dimension scores. It is critical to understand the role that cultural and racial identity plays in Latinx mental health and minority mental health as a whole. The null findings of this study serve to inspire further investigation to understand the mental health state of Latinx individuals in their young adulthood, and what role their educational environment plays in their psychological stress levels.

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Citation

Junek, Amanda (2023). Mental Health of the Latinx Community in the United States. Honors thesis, Duke University. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/27285.


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