Internalized stigma (or self-stigma), one of the most painful effects of stigma, causes people with mental health problems profound negative consequences, for example, psychological adversity, demoralization, and feelings of hopelessness. However, knowledge about self-stigma in people with different mental disorders is insufficient. We hypothesized that people with different psychiatric diagnoses have different levels of self-stigma. Through convenience sampling, we used the Internalized Stigma of Mental Illness Scale to compare people diagnosed with schizophrenia (n = 161), depressive disorder (n = 98), bipolar disorder (n = 43), and anxiety disorder (n = 45) in southern Taiwan. We found that people with schizophrenia (mean, 2.09-2.30) and those with bipolar disorder (mean, 2.16-2.38) had significantly higher levels of self-stigma, except for the Stigma Resistance, than did those with anxiety disorder (mean, 1.74-1.87). Our results suggest that clinicians should use different interventions to reduce self-stigma for populations with different psychiatric diagnoses.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Psychiatry and Mental health