Perceptions, attitudes and cultural understandings of mental health in Nigeria: a scoping review of published literature

LABINJO, Temitope, ASHMORE, Russell, SERRANT, Laura and TURNER, James (2020). Perceptions, attitudes and cultural understandings of mental health in Nigeria: a scoping review of published literature. Mental Health, Religion and Culture.

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    Mental health is a public health challenge with lack of understanding, great institutional neglect and widespread stigma in Nigeria. There is also a dearth of secondary review studies exploring knowledge, perceptions, and attitudes towards persons with mental health disorders in Nigeria. The aim of this scoping review was to explore the knowledge, perceptions, and attitudes of Nigerians towards mental health issues. Sixty-four articles were identified as meeting the eligibility criteria. The most common determinants of mental health disorders as perceived by Nigerians were supernatural causes such as possession of evil spirits, sorcery, witchcraft, and divine punishment. In addition, a significant number of articles attributed the cause to drug or alcohol misuse. Social distancing and avoidance were expressed in all papers that looked at attitudes towards people with mental disorders. The research showed that Nigerians held supernatural belief as the cause of mental disorders and religion is a significant cultural aspect for Nigerians. Therefore, collaboration with religious and traditional institutions could help improve knowledge and awareness. Further qualitative studies are needed to explore the lived experiences of Nigerians particularly, in the northern regions of the country.

    Item Type: Article
    Uncontrolled Keywords: Social Psychology; 1701 Psychology; 1702 Cognitive Sciences
    Identification Number:
    SWORD Depositor: Symplectic Elements
    Depositing User: Symplectic Elements
    Date Deposited: 26 Feb 2020 17:33
    Last Modified: 01 Sep 2021 01:18

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