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A cross-sectional, face-to-face, community survey of mental health and deprivation in post-recession Ireland: a rising tide lifts all boats?

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  26 February 2019

G. M. Sorin
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, Trinity College Dublin, Trinity Centre for Health Sciences, Tallaght University Hospital, Dublin 24, Ireland
C. Darker
Affiliation:
Department of Public Health and Primary Care, Institute of Population Health, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin 24, Ireland
L. Whiston
Affiliation:
School of Nursing and Human Sciences, Faculty of Science and Health, Dublin City University, Dublin 9, Ireland
A. O’Callaghan
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, Trinity College Dublin, Trinity Centre for Health Sciences, Tallaght University Hospital, Dublin 24, Ireland
J. M. Barry
Affiliation:
Department of Public Health and Primary Care, Institute of Population Health, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin 24, Ireland
B. D. Kelly
Affiliation:
Department of Psychiatry, Trinity College Dublin, Trinity Centre for Health Sciences, Tallaght University Hospital, Dublin 24, Ireland
Corresponding
E-mail address:

Abstract

Objective

To assess community mental health in suburban Dublin in 2018, 5 years after Ireland’s economic recession ended.

Methods

A cross-sectional, face-to-face, household survey was conducted in a random cluster sample of 351 households in Tallaght, a deprived suburb of Dublin.

Results

A majority of respondents (61.3%) reported stress over the previous 12 months, with a higher rate in areas of high (66.9%) compared to lower deprivation (55.5%). Deprivation was not related to rates of loneliness (20.2%), feeling depressed (20.2%), loss of interest (19.7%) or anxiety (22.5%). Mean score for positive mental health (59.3/100, with a higher score indicating better mental health) was lower than that reported in a national sample in 2007 (68/100); positive mental health was associated with not living with a person with chronic illness, self-identifying as ‘non-Irish’ and greater age. Mean score for psychological distress (76.7/100, with a higher score indicating less distress) was also lower than that in 2007 (82/100); less psychological distress was associated with not living with a person with chronic illness or disability, greater age and identifying as non-Irish. The rate of ‘probable mental illness’ over the previous 4 weeks (13.1%) was higher than in 2007 (7%).

Conclusions

Our findings emphasise the high prevalence of stress, especially in deprived suburban areas; the centrality of carer burden in determining mental wellbeing; and associations between positive mental health on the one hand and greater age and identifying as non-Irish on the other.

Type
Original Research
Copyright
© College of Psychiatrics of Ireland 2019 

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