Self-esteem key to treating mental health patients

Improve a young mental health patient’s sense of self-worth and it can help immensely in treating them, a new study claims.

The study involving youth with psychiatric disorder found that global self-worth was lower in the inpatient group compared to those receiving outpatient services. Results of the study were published in the Journal of the Canadian Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and it revealed that improving the self-worth of patients benefited their overall treatment.

The study was focused on a group of youth aged between 8-17 years who were receiving inpatient and outpatient psychiatric services.

“Inpatients often minimize their own positive attributes and strengths, making it difficult to accept positive feedback,” the authors wrote in their paper. “Individuals with psychiatric disorder, particularly internalizing problems, have dysfunctional negative views of themselves, their life experience, and their future.”

The authors also pointed out the possibility that inpatients showed lower self-worth because they might be dealing with severe mental health problems than outpatients.

“Because youths who are in the inpatient service have a lower self-concept, therapies within their overall treatment program aiming to improve self-worth might be worthwhile,” the researcher noted.
This research comes just days after Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton, launched a

a new mental health campaign to boost self-esteem of children and to encourage them “to be comfortable in their own skin”.

In the UK, there is an increased push to identify mental illness early in schools, as it is feared children are suffering from low self-esteem due to pressures placed on them by social media.

“Childhood is an incredibly important moment in our lives. It is the time when we explore our personalities, discover the potential that lies within us and learn how to be ourselves,” Middleton said in a message. “Our experience of the world at this early stage helps to shape who we become as adults, how we begin to feel comfortable in our own skin.”