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Voices of South Asian women: immigration and mental health

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dc.contributor.author Ahmad, F
dc.contributor.author Shik, A
dc.contributor.author Vanza, R
dc.contributor.author Cheung, A
dc.contributor.author George, U
dc.contributor.author Stewart, DE
dc.date.accessioned 2016-08-28T21:45:05Z
dc.date.available 2016-08-28T21:45:05Z
dc.date.issued 2004
dc.identifier.citation Ahmad F, Shik A, Vanza R, Cheung A, George U, Stewart DE. Voices of South Asian women: immigration and mental health. Women and Health 2004. 40(4):113-30. en_US
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10315/31849
dc.description.abstract Purpose: This qualitative research aimed to elicit experiences and beliefs of recent South Asian immigrant women about their major health concerns after immigration. Methods: Four focus groups were conducted with 24 Hindi-speaking women who had lived less than five years in Canada. The audiotaped data were transcribed, translated, and analyzed by identification of themes and subcategories. Results: Mental health (MH) emerged as an overarching health concern with three major themes, i.e., appraisal of the mental burden (extent and general susceptibility), stress-inducing factors, and coping strategies. Many participants agreed that MH did not become a concern to them until after immigration. Women discussed their compromised MH using verbal and symptomatic expressions. The stress-inducing factors identified by participants included loss of social support, economic uncertainties, downward social mobility, mechanistic lifestyle, barriers in accessing health services, and climatic and food changes. Women's major coping strategies included increased efforts to socialize, use of preventative health practices and self-awareness. Conclusion: Although participant women discussed a number of ways to deal with post-immigration stressors, the women's perceived compromised mental health reflects the inadequacy of their coping strategies and the available resources. Despite access to healthcare providers, women failed to identify healthcare encounters as opportunities to seek help and discuss their mental health concerns. Health and social care programs need to actively address the compromised mental health perceived by the studied group. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship This study was funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. en_US
dc.publisher Taylor & Francis en_US
dc.rights “This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Women and Health on 2004, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1300/J013v40n04_07.” en_US
dc.subject Immigration en_US
dc.subject South Asian en_US
dc.subject Mental health en_US
dc.subject Stress en_US
dc.subject Canada en_US
dc.title Voices of South Asian women: immigration and mental health en_US
dc.type Article en_US
dc.rights.article http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1300/J013v40n04_07 en_US

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