Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Stigma deters those with alcohol disorders from seeking treatment, study finds

Date:
December 3, 2010
Source:
Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health
Summary:
Despite the existence of effective programs for treating alcohol dependencies and disorders, less than a quarter of people who are diagnosed actually seek treatment. In a recent study, researchers report that people diagnosed with alcoholism at some point in their lifetime were more than 60 percent less likely to seek treatment if they believed they would be stigmatized once their status is known.

Despite the existence of effective programs for treating alcohol dependencies and disorders, less than a quarter of people who are diagnosed actually seek treatment. In a recent study by Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health researchers report that people diagnosed with alcoholism at some point in their lifetime were more than 60% less likely to seek treatment if they believed they would be stigmatized once their status is known.

This is the first study to address the underuse of alcohol services specifically with regard to alcohol-related stigma. Findings are published in the American Journal of Epidemiology.

Based on a survey of 34,653 individuals in the general population (6,309 of whom had an alcohol use disorder) drawn from the National Epidemiologic Survey of Alcohol and Related Conditions (NESARC), researchers found that individuals with an alcohol use disorder who perceived negative stigma were 0.37 times less likely to seek treatment for their disorder compared to individuals with similarly serious alcohol disorders who did not perceive stigma.

In the general population, younger individuals perceived less stigma, and also were less likely to seek treatment for an alcohol disorder. Men perceived more stigma compared to women (38.1%vs. 37.7%). Non-Hispanic blacks and Hispanic adults overall reported a higher mean stigma compared to Whites (39 % vs. 37%) and were less likely to utilize alcohol services. However, the data also suggest that individuals with more severe alcohol disorders had a greater likelihood to seek treatment. Overall, perceived stigma was significantly higher for those with lower personal income, lower education, and individuals previously married compared to those who had never married.

"People with alcohol disorders who perceive high levels of alcohol stigma may avoid entering treatment because it confirms their membership in a stigmatized group," said Katherine Keyes, PhD, in the Mailman School of Public Health Department Epidemiology. "Given that alcohol use disorders are one of the most prevalent psychiatric disorders in the United States, the empirical documentation of stigma as a barrier to treatment is an important public health finding. Greater attention to reducing the stigma of having an alcohol disorder is urgently needed so that more individuals access the effective systems of care available to treat these disabling conditions."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. K. M. Keyes, M. L. Hatzenbuehler, K. A. McLaughlin, B. Link, M. Olfson, B. F. Grant, D. Hasin. Stigma and Treatment for Alcohol Disorders in the United States. American Journal of Epidemiology, 2010; DOI: 10.1093/aje/kwq304

Cite This Page:

Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health. "Stigma deters those with alcohol disorders from seeking treatment, study finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 3 December 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/12/101202171057.htm>.
Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health. (2010, December 3). Stigma deters those with alcohol disorders from seeking treatment, study finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/12/101202171057.htm
Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health. "Stigma deters those with alcohol disorders from seeking treatment, study finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/12/101202171057.htm (accessed April 20, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Study On Artists' Brain Shows They're 'Structurally Unique'

Study On Artists' Brain Shows They're 'Structurally Unique'

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) The brains of artists aren't really left-brain or right-brain, but rather have extra neural matter in visual and motor control areas. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) A recent study links apathetic feelings to a smaller brain. Researchers say the results indicate a need for apathy screening for at-risk seniors. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Are School Dress Codes Too Strict?

Are School Dress Codes Too Strict?

AP (Apr. 16, 2014) Pushing the limits on style and self-expression is a rite of passage for teens and even younger kids. How far should schools go with their dress codes? The courts have sided with schools in an era when school safety is paramount. (April 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) A new study conducted by researchers at Northwestern and Harvard suggests even casual marijuana use can alter your brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins