Navigation Links
Rutgers study: Anxiety disorders in poor moms likely to result from poverty, not mental illness
Date:7/19/2012

NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. Poor mothers are more likely to be classified as having the mental illness known as generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) because they live in poverty not because they are suffering from a psychiatric disorder, according to Rutgers researchers.

Judith C. Baer, an associate professor in the School of Social Work, and her team, in the study, "Is it Generalized Anxiety Disorder or Poverty? An Examination of Poor Mothers and Their Children," published online in Child and Adolescent Social Work, argue that although high levels of stress over long periods can lead to psychological problems, there is no evidence that generalized anxiety disorder in poor mothers is because of an "internal malfunction."

The findings confirm earlier studies that the poorest mothers have the greater odds of being classified as having generalized anxiety disorder. But Baer and her team wrote, "...there is no evidence for a malfunction of some internal mechanism. Rather, "there is a physical need in the real world that is unmet and produces anxiety."

"The distinction is important because there are different ways to treat the problem," Baer said. "While supportive therapy and parent skills-training are often helpful, sometimes the most appropriate intervention is financial aid and concrete services."

Rutgers researchers argue that changing and broadening definitions for GAD have caused, in some cases, mental health experts to categorize the reactions of these mothers to the extreme conditions they face daily as symptoms of the anxiety disorder.

Baer's team has been exploring relationships between poor mothers and their children and whether links between poverty and maternal anxiety might play a part in their offspring developing anxiety of their own.

The latest research by Baer and colleagues MiSung Kim, who completed her doctorate in May, and Bonnie Wilkenfeld, a doctoral candidate, analyzed data from the ongoing Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study with 4,898 participants conducted at Princeton University, consisting of surveys and home observations when children were 3-years-old. It confirmed that the poorest mothers had greater odds of being classified as having GAD but that the path from anxiety to parenting stress was not supported.

"This suggests that mothers can be poor and anxious, but still provide positive parenting for their children," Baer said.

Currently, psychiatric diagnoses are based on the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), which uses symptom-based criteria to determine disorders. Recent versions do not consider context, such as poverty conditions, in determining diagnoses, Baer said.

"Our findings suggest that anxiety in poor mothers is usually not a psychiatric problem but a reaction to severe environmental deficits," she continued. "Thus, assessment should include careful attention to contextual factors and environmental deficits as playing a role in the presentation of symptoms. Labeling an individual with a diagnosis, especially if it is inaccurate, has a serious social stigma."


'/>"/>

Contact: Steve Manas
smanas@ur.rutgers.edu
732-932-7084 x612
Rutgers University
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Rutgers team discovers novel approach to stimulate immune cells
2. Children with asthma marginalized in movies, says Rutgers-Camden researcher
3. Rutgers leads effort to replicate care management programs in 4 U.S. cities
4. Study: Women not getting enough exercise; at risk of developing metabolic syndrome
5. Study: Insomnia takes toll on tinnitus patients
6. Study: No link between depression, nasal obstruction
7. Study: More Pre-Teens Get Vaccines When Middle Schools Require Them
8. Study: Kids Who Sleep in Parents Bed Less Likely to Be Overweight
9. OHSU study: Misdiagnosis of MS is costing health system millions per year
10. UW study: Sleep apnea associated with higher mortality from cancer
11. Study: Heart damage after chemo linked to stress in cardiac cells
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/27/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Beleza Medspa has initiated a new program to ... the first time that Coolsculpting is being used for for more than just cosmetic ... they meet the prescribed body-fat standard, measured by the circumference-based tape method. The ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... May 26, 2016 , ... Despite last ... meeting, expect Janet Yellen and company to wait until March 2017 for an interest ... University’s J. Mack Robinson College of Business. , “The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... May 26, 2016 , ... ... in intellectual property (IP) to its specialty academic programs. , Answering to the ... college’s existing certificate programs in health law, and environmental and land use law. ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... 2016 , ... There are nearly 14.5 million people living with and beyond ... Sunday, June 5, 2016, communities around the world will gather to recognize these cancer ... Cancer Survivors Day® is an annual worldwide Celebration of Life that is held on ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... ... In an effort to provide hair restoration information to the widest possible audience, Dr. Parsa ... not use the app. Dr. Mohebi, the founder of Parsa Mohebi Hair Restoration, is making ... , Dr. Mohebi says, “The positive response to the Snapchat videos we started last month ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/26/2016)... Tenn. , May 26, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... of software and analytics, network solutions and ... today announced it entered into a strategic ... provider of outpatient software solutions and revenue ... centers, specialty hospitals and rehabilitation clinics to ...
(Date:5/25/2016)... , May 25, 2016 According ... by Type (3D, 2D, 4D), by Therapeutic Area (Oncology, ... End User (Medical Device Manufacturers, Hospitals/ Clinics) - Forecast ... global Medical Animation Market for the forecast period of ... USD 301.3 Million by 2021 from USD 117.3 Million ...
(Date:5/25/2016)... 25, 2016  Zymo Research Corp. announced today ... reference materials that help researchers obtain the most ... analyses. The rapid growth of the study of ... have standard methods to improve the reproducibility and ... exist at every step of the measurement process ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: