Online Program

A comparison of psychosocial risk factors and protective factors in mental health among Latinas and Latinos in the U.S

Tuesday, November 3, 2015 : 3:10 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.

Amy Ai, PhD, Psychology, Social Work, Family Medicine, and Nursing, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL
Hoa B. Appel, PhD, MPH, School of Nursing & Health Studies, University of Washington Bothell, Bothell, WA
Hyung J. Daniel Lee, M.S.W., School of Social Work, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
Introduction: Latino Americans are expected to count for an estimated 30% of the national population in 2050 (US Census Bureau, 2010). Few studies have investigated modifiable psychosocial factors that could protect Latina/o against major psychiatric disorders. As predominantly Catholics, the Latina/o population is characterized by the influence of collectivism in which family values play a central role in their ethnic identity and mental health. This gender-specific study explored a psychosocial risk factor (Negative Interaction) for major depressive disorder (MDD), general anxiety disorder (GAD), and suicidal ideation (SI) among Latinas and Latinos nationwide.

Method:  The National Latino and Asian American Study(NLAAS) is first population-based national mental health epidemiological survey of Latina/o. We conducted three sets of logistic regressions, predicting three diagnoses based outcomes for 1,427 Latinas and 1,127 Latinos, respectively, followed two preplanned steps. 

Results: For each outcome examined, psychosocial risk and protective factors produced a significantly better model fit in Model 1 than socio-demographic and acculturation variables known to predict mental health outcomes in Model 1. The Latina model showed that Negative Interactions was associated with increased likelihood of GAD and SI, whereas Family Cohesion appeared to be protective against GAD. The Latino model, however, showed that Negative Interactions with family members significantly predicted the likelihood of MDD. 

Conclusions: Because traditional culture dictates the distinct gender role value in family, conflicts therein could predict different psychiatric disorders between Latinas and Latinos. Differential protective and risk factors in the two subgroups suggest that behavioral intervention should address certain gender-specific components to improve care and prevention mental illness in Latina/o.

Learning Areas:

Diversity and culture
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Identify three psychosocial risk factors for that lead to major depressive disorder, general anxiety disorder and suicidal ideation among Latina/o nationwide. Compare psychosocial risk factors to protective factors among Latinos in the U.S. Analyze the different psychiatric disorders between Latinas and Latinos in the U.S.

Keyword(s): Depression, Risk Factors/Assesment

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I was the co-author on this research and contributed to the research and writing.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

Back to: 4333.0: Oral: Latino mental health