Objectives: Stigma and discrimination
because of mental illness is still prevalent even in high-income countries
where a lot of emphasis has been given to anti-stigma activities and measures
to reduce the marginalization of these persons. One aspect of the stigma issue
is the self-stigmatization that persons suffering from mental illness are
experiencing. In this study two different societies have been compared as
regards internalized stigma of mental illness. Methods: A widely used
questionnaire was used by the Internalized Stigma of Mental Illness scale
(ISMI). One sample of psychiatric patients from Sweden (N = 163) and from Iran
(N = 138) is compared. Results: The Swedish sample generally reports lower
levels of experienced stigma except for items covering selfblame and feelings
of alienation. Conclusions: There are reasons to consider the aspect of
self-stigmatization when working with mentally ill persons even in high income
countries with well developed mental health services.
Cite this paper
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