Mental Health Conditions among South Asians in the United States
South Asians, or individuals with ancestral roots in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Nepal, constitute one of the fastest growing groups of Asian immigrants in the United States (Inman and Tummala-Narra 2010; U.S. Census Bureau, Population projections of the United States by age, sex, race and Hispanic Origin: 1992 to 2050, 2010). South Asian immigrants and their children face acculturative stress, and specifically numerous challenges in the U.S., such as feelings of loss, separation, alienation, and anxiety about the new cultural environment, intergenerational stress, problems with English language communication, immigration status, and financial limitations. Stress related to acculturation, trauma, and discrimination has been linked with mental health outcomes (depression, anxiety, substance abuse) among various groups of immigrants in the U.S. This chapter delineates the impact of the immigration and acculturation process on mental health among first (immigrant) and second generation South Asians in the U.S. Additionally, we address barriers to the identification of and access to culturally-informed mental health care.
KeywordsSouth Asians Mental health Acculturative stress Trauma Intervention
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