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Journal article

Young people's narratives of depression

Authors:
ISSAKAINEN Mervi, HANNINEN Vilma
Journal article citation:
Journal of Youth Studies, 19(2), 2016, pp.237-250.
Publisher:
Taylor and Francis
Place of publication:
Philadelphia, USA

This article reports on findings from a study, which aimed to gain insight into young people's depression as a part of their life course by analysing written accounts of 81 young Finnish people who self-identified as having been depressed. The participants’ accounts were seen as reflecting both their actual life and their narrative interpretations of it in relation to the prevailing normative conceptions regarding youth. The accounts can be grouped into four main story types. The story type referred to as growing up on a sidetrack depicts depression as having its origins in childhood adversities that hinder the realisation of normative goals. Falling off the track depicts how a young person's life can be derailed as a result of experiences that cause or exacerbate depression. In the story missing the track, depression is intertwined with one's experience of failure in meeting normative expectations, whereas the story questioning the track features the problematisation of such expectations. The results underscore the importance of tackling different adverse conditions in childhood, adolescence and young adulthood in a timely fashion, as well as the importance of therapy, counselling and guidance, which help young people to manage difficulties and depression in their life. (Publisher abstract)

Journal article

Targeting suicide - qualitative analysis of suicide prevention strategy documents in England and Finland

Authors:
SOLIN Pia, NIKANDER Pirjo
Journal article citation:
Mental Health Review Journal, 16(1), March 2011, pp.5-14.
Publisher:
Emerald

In a policy context, suicide is not easily defined, understood or prevented. It leaves a long-lasting mental and social burden on those left behind, as well as direct consequences on the health sector and society as a whole. The means policy itself is often difficult to turn into action. This review details the interpretative repertoires found in the suicide prevention strategies of both England and Finland, and examines their potential functions and audiences. In both nations, the political repertoire was formed from four themes: the public health epidemiology; the everyday; the preventive action; and the reflective repertoires. The paper outlines the polyphonic and multi-layered nature of these policy documents and how different repertoires may be used for various functions. The paper concludes that, while the polyphonic nature of policy documents is necessary to reach a wider readership and to capture suicide as a controversial phenomenon, its argumentative style may also undermine some of the measures and actions recommended by policy itself.

Journal article

Brief report: excessive alcohol use negatively affects the course of adolescent depression: one year naturalistic follow-up study

Authors:
MERIRINNE Esa, et al
Journal article citation:
Journal of Adolescence, 33(1), February 2010, pp.221-226.
Publisher:
Academic Press

In this study, the researchers aimed to clarify the impact of the core alcohol use phenomenon of drunkenness-oriented drinking, in terms of weekly drunkenness, on the course of adolescent unipolar depression and psychosocial functioning, in a 1 year follow-up study of depressed adolescent patients referred from schools, health care centres and social and family counselling services to adolescent psychiatric outpatient clinics in Finland. The authors conclude that excessive alcohol use (defined as weekly drunkenness) seems to negatively affect the course of depressive symptoms and, even after a year, psychosocial functioning, and that treatments designed to reduce alcohol use seem to be justified along with depression treatment, but that intervention studies are needed to evaluate the best approach.

Journal article

Change in reciprocity as a predictor of depressive symptoms: a prospective cohort study of Finnish women and men

Authors:
VAANANEN Ari, et al
Journal article citation:
Social Science and Medicine, 67(11), December 2008, pp.1907-1916.
Publisher:
Elsevier

The purpose of the study was to examine gender differences in the association between changes in the balance of give and take in close relationships and depressive symptoms. Data from a 5-year prospective cohort study in Finland (HeSSup Study) (N = 18,445) were analyzed. After adjustment for demographic characteristics, recent negative life events, baseline depressive symptoms, hostility, and the supportiveness of social network, a shift of balance toward support receiving was a significant risk factor for future depressive symptoms among women. In contrast, men whose balance of give and take had moved toward support giving had a higher risk of future depressive symptoms than other men. When the analyses were replicated in a sub-cohort of initially non-depressed participants who lived in reciprocal relationships and had no recent life events, the results became even more pronounced among women, although not among men. It is concluded that, for women, a shift in their close relationships toward support receiving may lead to increased risk of depressive symptoms, whereas for men a shift toward giving may have a parallel though less evident impact.

Journal article

The effect of pre-employment factors on job control, job strain and psychological distress: a 31-year longitudinal study

Authors:
ELOVAINIO Marko, et al
Journal article citation:
Social Science and Medicine, 65(2), July 2007, pp.187-199.
Publisher:
Elsevier

This study examined the role of pre-employment factors, such as maternal antenatal depression, low birth weight, childhood socioeconomic position, early adolescence health risk behaviours and academic performance, in the relationship between work characteristics (low job control and high job demands, or job strain) and psychological distress at age 31. The data of 2062 women and 2231 men was derived from the prospective unselected population-based Northern Finland 1966 Birth Cohort study. Results of linear regression models showed that being female, father's low socioeconomic position, and poor academic achievement in adolescence were linked to low control and high job strain jobs at age 31, and that low control and high job strain were associated with psychological distress at age 31. Although having lower school grades, high absence rate from school, and moderate alcohol consumption at age 14 were significant predictors of psychological distress at age 31, the associations between job control, job strain and psychological distress remained after controlling for these and other pre-employment effects. As such, pre-employment factors do seem to link people to risky work environments, which in turn seem to relate strongly to psychological distress. However, the relationship between pre-employment factors and later psychological distress in adulthood is not completely explained by job environment.

Journal article

Risk factors for psychiatric disturbance in children with intellectual disability

Authors:
KOSKENTAUSTA T., IIVANAINEN M.
Journal article citation:
Journal of Intellectual Disability Research, 51(1), January 2007, pp.43-53.
Publisher:
Wiley

Children with intellectual disability (ID) have a higher risk for psychiatric disturbance than their peers with normal intelligence, but research data on risk factors are insufficient and partially conflicting. The subjects comprised 75 children with ID aged 6–13 years from an area of Finland. Data were obtained from case files and the following four questionnaires completed by their parents or other carers: Developmental Behaviour Checklist, American Association of Mental Deficiency (AAMD) Adaptive Behavior Scale, a questionnaire on additional disabilities, and a questionnaire on family characteristics and child development. The risk of psychopathology was most significantly increased by moderate ID, limitations in adaptive behaviour, impaired language development, poor socialization, living with one biological parent, and low socio-economic status of the family. The risk of psychopathology in children with ID is increased by factors related to family characteristics and child development. Identifying these factors will help diagnose and possibly prevent psychiatric disorders in these children.

Journal article

Multiple measures of socioeconomic circumstances and common mental disorders

Authors:
LAHELMA Eero, et al
Journal article citation:
Social Science and Medicine, 63(6), September 2006, pp.1383-1399.
Publisher:
Elsevier

While serious mental disorders typically show socioeconomic differences similar to physical illness—that is, that lower positions imply poorer health—differences for common mental disorders have been inconsistent. We aim to clarify the associations and pathways between measures of socioeconomic circumstances and common mental disorders by simultaneously analysing several past and present socioeconomic measures. The data were derived from middle-aged women and men employed by the City of Helsinki. Cross-sectional surveys were conducted in 2000–2002 among employees who, during each year, reached 40, 45, 50, 55 or 60 years of age. The pooled data include 8970 respondents (80% women; response rate 67%). Common mental disorders were measured by GHQ-12 and the SF-36 mental component summary. Seven socioeconomic measures were included: parental education, childhood economic difficulties, own education, occupational class, household income, home ownership, and current economic difficulties. Logistic regression analysis was used to examine associations between the socioeconomic circumstances and common mental disorders. Past and present economic difficulties were strongly associated with common mental disorders, whereas conventional past and present socioeconomic status measures showed weak or slightly reverse associations. Adjusting for age and gradually for each socioeconomic measure did not affect the main findings, which were very similar for women and men, as well as for both measures of common mental disorders. While the associations of conventional socioeconomic status measures with common mental disorders were weak and inconsistent, our results highlight the importance of past and present economic difficulties to these disorders.

Journal article

Activation or discouragement - the effect of enforced participation on the success of job-search training

Authors:
MALMBERG-HEIMONEN Ira, VUORI Jukka
Journal article citation:
European Journal of Social Work, 8(4), December 2005, pp.451-467.
Publisher:
Taylor and Francis

In recent years, there has been a shift in labour market policies towards enforcing unemployed workers’ participation in labour market programmes by means of financial sanctions. Requirements of activation and financial sanctions have changed the nature of social work and generated a conflict between client needs and policy requirements. This Finnish study investigates whether and how enforced participation modifies the impact of job-search training on re-employment and mental health. A total of 627 unemployed persons participated in this six-month follow-up study with a control group. In particular, those unemployed workers who were not able to meet the goal of the enforced initiatives by gaining employment are at risk of adverse mental health effects or even of discouragement on the labour market. The results of the follow-up study show that enforced participation did not increase re-employment; however it impaired the positive mental health impacts of the programme. Further analyses demonstrate that enforced participation in job-search training decreased re-employment among the longer-term unemployed workers. It is important that social workers acknowledge the risks that are involved with the enforcement for the more vulnerable groups of unemployed workers.

Journal article Full text available online for free

Mental disorders in prison populations aged 15-21: national register study of two cohorts in Finland

Authors:
SAILAS Eila S., et al
Journal article citation:
British Medical Journal, 11.06.05, 2005, pp.1364-1365.
Publisher:
British Medical Association

Briefly reports on a study into the changes in psychiatric hospitalisations in Finnish prisoners aged 15 to 21 to examine whether a selection process occurs as the number of young prisoners decreases. Results of the study indicated that relatively more people with mental health problems end up in prisons as the prison population diminishes. The findings reflect the failure of healthcare systems and emphasise the necessity for early screening of mental disorders in young offenders.

Journal article

The sociocultural context of the European Early Promotion Project

Authors:
DRAGONAS Thalia, et al
Journal article citation:
International Journal of Mental Health Promotion, 7(1), February 2005, pp.32-40.
Publisher:
Taylor and Francis

Describes the sociocultural settings and relevant health care services within which the European Early Promotion Project was conducted, in order to render the interpretation of study results more meaningful and justify cross-cultural differences. Greece, Cyprus and Serbia are characterised by lower social expenditure and welfare provision and higher poverty rates than the UK and, especially, Finland, the latter having achieved an advanced welfare provision system. Large differences also exist among participating countries in child mental health and primary care services. Finland and the UK have made the biggest advances in promotional work with families, while Greece, Cyprus and Serbia present, to smaller or larger degree, deficiencies in health service infrastructure and their ability to follow social, economic and scientific advances in the area of maternal and child wellbeing. Part of a special issue on the EEPP.

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