Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health

, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp 17–28 | Cite as

“It’s Like Going through an Earthquake”: Anthropological Perspectives on Depression among Latino Immigrants

  • Igda E. Martínez Pincay
  • Peter J. Guarnaccia
Original Paper


Depression is one of the most prevalent mental illnesses in the community and is responsible for a significant amount of disability. According to epidemiological and primary care studies, Latinos suffer from depression at high rates. This paper examines in depth Latinos’ conceptions of depression and their attitudes towards and expectations of mental health treatment. The aim of this paper is to summarize several qualitative studies examining Latinos’ cultural understandings of mental health in general and depression in particular, as well as to obtain information about the barriers to care that this community experienced. The results are a compilation of findings from four different research projects in New Jersey and New York that examined diverse Latinos’ conceptions of mental health, treatment and barriers to care.


Depression Latinos Immigration Barriers to care Attitudes towards treatment 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Igda E. Martínez Pincay
    • 1
  • Peter J. Guarnaccia
    • 2
  1. 1.Graduate School of Applied and Professional PsychologyRutgers UniversityPiscatawayUSA
  2. 2.Institute for Health, Health Care Policy, and Aging ResearchRutgers UniversityNew BrunswickUSA

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