Trauma, Psychosocial Factors, and Help-Seeking in Three Immigrant Groups in Finland


Multiple psychosocial factors influence help-seeking behavior among immigrants, but studies have focused on separate issues in single cultural groups. This study tested a model of help-seeking behavior among three ethnically different immigrant groups. Participants were 1356 Somali, Russian, and Kurdish immigrants (18–64 years). They reported past traumatic events, social network, acculturation indices, trust in services, and mental health as well as usage of mental and somatic health services. Structural equation modeling (SEM) with multigroup procedure was applied. First, past traumatic events were associated with seeking more mental health services, indirectly mediated through increased risk for mental health problems in all three ethnic groups. Second, acculturation played a significant role in the use of mental and somatic health services only in Kurds and social networks in Kurds and Russians. The unique culturally influenced dynamics in help-seeking behavior should be considered in the development of health services.

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Correspondence to Carla C. Schubert.

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Schubert, C.C., Punamäki, R., Suvisaari, J. et al. Trauma, Psychosocial Factors, and Help-Seeking in Three Immigrant Groups in Finland. J Behav Health Serv Res 46, 80–98 (2019).

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