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LGBT Mental Health – Study from California August 21, 2009

Posted by Geekgirl in psychology, social, Uncategorized.
Tags: , ,

Continuing the mental health theme, this abstract published very recently. The final publication is not yet out. However, you can read the provisional publication at http://www.biomedcentral.com/content/pdf/1471-244x-9-52.pdf

I encourage you to take a look. It has a different perspective than the last paper that I published.

Yep, sometimes studies find different things. That’s real life. That’s the nature of science. That’s why experimental design and asking the right questions are so important. Especially in a field like psychology where there isn’t anything tangible to measure.

Influence of gender, sexual orientation, and need on treatment utilization for substance use and mental disorders: findings from the california quality of life survey

Christine E. Grella emailLisa Greenwell emailVickie M. Mays email and Susan D. Cochran email

BMC Psychiatry 2009, 9:52doi:10.1186/1471-244X-9-52

Published: 14 August 2009

Abstract (provisional)


Prior research has shown a higher prevalence of substance use and mental disorders among sexual minorities, however, the influence of sexual orientation on treatment seeking has not been widely studied. We use a model of help-seeking for vulnerable populations to investigate factors related to treatment for alcohol or drug use disorders and mental health disorders, focusing on the contributions of gender, sexual orientation, and need.


Survey data were obtained from a population-based probability sample of California residents that oversampled for sexual minorities. Logistic regression was used to model the enabling, predisposing, and need-related factors associated with past-year mental health or substance abuse treatment utilization among adults aged 18-64 (N = 2,074).


Compared with individuals without a diagnosed disorder, those with any disorder were more likely to receive treatment. After controlling for both presence of disorder and other factors, lesbians and bisexual women were most likely to receive treatment and heterosexual men were the least likely. Moreover, a considerable proportion of sexual orientation minorities without any diagnosable disorder, particularly lesbians and bisexual women, also reported receiving treatment.


The study highlights the need to better understand the factors beyond meeting diagnostic criteria that underlie treatment utilization among sexual minorities. Future research should also aim to ascertain the effects of treatment provided to sexual minorities with and without diagnosable disorders, including the possibility that the provision of such treatment may reduce the likelihood of their progression to greater severity of distress, disorders, or impairments in functioning.



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