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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 10  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 1015-1020

Mental health literacy among secondary school female students in Abha, Saudi Arabia

1 Family Medicine Resident (Psychiatry Level 4), Joint Program of Family Medicine, Abha, Saudi Arabia
2 Department of Family Medicine, College of Medicine, King Khaled University, Abha, Saudi Arabia
3 Family Medicine Consultant, College of Medicine, King Khaled University, Abha, Saudi Arabia
4 Department of Psychiatry, Psychiatry Resident (Psychiatry Level 4) Collage of Medicine, KKU, Abha, Saudi Arabia
5 Family Medicine Resident (Psychiatry Level 4), College of Medicine, KKU, Abha, Saudi Arabia
6 College of Medicine, King Khaled University, Abha, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Alhanouf Ali Abonassir
Family Medicine Resident (PYG4), Joint Program of Family Medicine, Abha
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jfmpc.jfmpc_2083_20

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Background: Worldwide, mental health is a big problem and Saudi Arabia is not far behind in observing this. It seems that progress in the field of mental health is slow. Interventions in mental health education have resulted in positive results. Participation by family members, sensitization to care and social integration include some of methods believed to target understanding and counter stigma surrounding mental illness. Aim: To assess mental health literacy among female students of secondary schools in Abha city, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Methodology: A descriptive cross-sectional study from May 2019 to 2020 was conducted at the female governmental secondary schools in Abha sector. A total sample of 350 female students from a total of 5000 students were included. Sampled students were selected from secondary schools using probability proportionate to size using two stage cluster sample technique. Data were collected from students directly using pre-structured questionnaire. The researchers created the study questionnaire after extensive literature review and expert consultation. Results: Almost half (48.9%) study participants had good awareness of the signs and indications of anxiety and depression. Loss of confidence and poor self-esteem were identified as signs of depression by 81%, sleep disturbance by 77% and disturbed appetite by 76.2% participants. Parent's education level and occupation, participant's educational performance and family living arrangement were significantly related with their awareness in univariate analysis. Father's education level (ORA = 1.45), maternal engagement with occupation (ORA = 4.18) and participant living with parents (ORA = 5.4) were identified as predictors of mental health awareness. Social media was reported as the most common source of awareness. The approach towards individuals with mental illness were helpful. Conclusions and recommendations: In conclusion, the study revealed that secondary school students had satisfactory awareness level regarding mental health and its impact. They exhibited positive attitude towards friendship with person having mental illness.

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