Mental illness is prevalent on college campuses as undergraduate students are a vulnerable population. This is due to a lack of support structure and stress inducing environment. There are unknown barriers leading to underutilization of mental health services. The literature lacks a consensus on the effects of stigma. How does mental health stigma affect help-seeking behavior amongst undergraduate university students? And are interventions able to overcome this barrier by increasing mental health literacy amongst students? Databases PubMed and PsycINFO were searched between January 8, 2020 and March 5, 2020. A rapid review of studies relating stigma to help-seeking behavior and interventions utilizing mental health literacy was conducted. Eight studies met the eligibility criteria. Six outcomes were reported upon including; self-stigma, public stigma, attitudes, barriers to treatment, help-seeking intention, and mental health literacy. Public stigma was found to deter help-seeking intention, self-stigma did not indicate an effect. It was not possible to conclude that increasing mental health literacy reduced barriers due to a lack of studies and mixed results. The review revealed a gap in the literature regarding help-seeking behavior, as the majority of studies evaluated help-seeking intention.
Recommended CitationSiciliano, MPH(c), Olivia R.; Leader, DrPH, MPH, Amy; and Frasso, PhD, CPH, Rosemary, "The effect of mental health stigma on helping-seeking behavior amongst undergraduate university students" (2020). Master of Public Health Thesis and Capstone Presentations. Presentation 350.