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Persistence of mental health problems and needs in a college student population.
J Affect Disord 2009; 117(3):180-5JA

Abstract

BACKGROUND

Cross-sectional studies indicate a high prevalence of mental health problems among college students, but there are fewer longitudinal data on these problems and related help-seeking behavior.

METHODS

We conducted a baseline web-based survey of students attending a large public university in fall 2005 and a two-year follow-up survey in fall 2007. We used brief screening instruments to measure symptoms of mental disorders (anxiety, depression, eating disorders), as well as self-injury and suicidal ideation. We estimated the persistence of these mental health problems between the two time points, and determined to what extent students with mental health problems perceived a need for or used mental health services (medication or therapy). We conducted logistic regression analyses examining how baseline predictors were associated with mental health and help-seeking two years later.

RESULTS

Over half of students suffered from at least one mental health problem at baseline or follow-up. Among students with at least one mental health problem at baseline, 60% had at least one mental health problem two years later. Among students with a mental health problem at both time points, fewer than half received treatment between those time points.

LIMITATIONS

Mental health problems are based on self-report to brief screens, and the sample is from a single university.

CONCLUSIONS

These findings indicate that mental disorders are prevalent and persistent in a student population. While the majority of students with probable disorders are aware of the need for treatment, most of these students do not receive treatment, even over a two-year period.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Veterans Affairs, Health Services Research and Development (HSR&D) Center of Excellence, Serious Mental Illness Treatment Research and Evaluation Center (SMITREC), Ann Arbor, MI, United States. kzivin@umich.eduNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

19178949

Citation

Zivin, Kara, et al. "Persistence of Mental Health Problems and Needs in a College Student Population." Journal of Affective Disorders, vol. 117, no. 3, 2009, pp. 180-5.
Zivin K, Eisenberg D, Gollust SE, et al. Persistence of mental health problems and needs in a college student population. J Affect Disord. 2009;117(3):180-5.
Zivin, K., Eisenberg, D., Gollust, S. E., & Golberstein, E. (2009). Persistence of mental health problems and needs in a college student population. Journal of Affective Disorders, 117(3), pp. 180-5. doi:10.1016/j.jad.2009.01.001.
Zivin K, et al. Persistence of Mental Health Problems and Needs in a College Student Population. J Affect Disord. 2009;117(3):180-5. PubMed PMID: 19178949.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Persistence of mental health problems and needs in a college student population. AU - Zivin,Kara, AU - Eisenberg,Daniel, AU - Gollust,Sarah E, AU - Golberstein,Ezra, Y1 - 2009/01/28/ PY - 2008/08/25/received PY - 2008/12/30/revised PY - 2009/01/04/accepted PY - 2009/1/31/entrez PY - 2009/1/31/pubmed PY - 2009/12/16/medline SP - 180 EP - 5 JF - Journal of affective disorders JO - J Affect Disord VL - 117 IS - 3 N2 - BACKGROUND: Cross-sectional studies indicate a high prevalence of mental health problems among college students, but there are fewer longitudinal data on these problems and related help-seeking behavior. METHODS: We conducted a baseline web-based survey of students attending a large public university in fall 2005 and a two-year follow-up survey in fall 2007. We used brief screening instruments to measure symptoms of mental disorders (anxiety, depression, eating disorders), as well as self-injury and suicidal ideation. We estimated the persistence of these mental health problems between the two time points, and determined to what extent students with mental health problems perceived a need for or used mental health services (medication or therapy). We conducted logistic regression analyses examining how baseline predictors were associated with mental health and help-seeking two years later. RESULTS: Over half of students suffered from at least one mental health problem at baseline or follow-up. Among students with at least one mental health problem at baseline, 60% had at least one mental health problem two years later. Among students with a mental health problem at both time points, fewer than half received treatment between those time points. LIMITATIONS: Mental health problems are based on self-report to brief screens, and the sample is from a single university. CONCLUSIONS: These findings indicate that mental disorders are prevalent and persistent in a student population. While the majority of students with probable disorders are aware of the need for treatment, most of these students do not receive treatment, even over a two-year period. SN - 1573-2517 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/19178949/Persistence_of_mental_health_problems_and_needs_in_a_college_student_population_ L2 - https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0165-0327(09)00009-3 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -