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Social isolation as a core feature of adolescent depression: a qualitative study in Porto Alegre, Brazil.

Authors
  • Viduani, Anna1
  • Benetti, Silvia1
  • Martini, Thaís1
  • Buchweitz, Claudia1
  • Ottman, Katherine2
  • Wahid, Syed Shabab2
  • Fisher, Helen L3, 4
  • Mondelli, Valeria5
  • Kohrt, Brandon A2
  • Kieling, Christian1, 6
  • 1 Department of Psychiatry, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil. , (Brazil)
  • 2 Division of Global Mental Health, George Washington University, Washington, D. C, USA.
  • 3 Social, Genetic & Developmental Psychiatry Centre, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience, King's College London, London, UK.
  • 4 ESRC Centre for Society and Mental Health, King's College London, London, UK.
  • 5 King's College London, Department of Psychological Medicine, King's College London, Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience, London, UK.
  • 6 Child & Adolescent Psychiatry Division, Hospital de Clínicas de Porto Alegre, Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil. , (Brazil)
Type
Published Article
Journal
International Journal of Qualitative Studies on Health and Well-being
Publisher
Informa UK Limited
Publication Date
Dec 01, 2021
Volume
16
Issue
1
Pages
1978374–1978374
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1080/17482631.2021.1978374
PMID: 34592914
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

The goal of this study was to explore the perspectives of different stakeholders regarding the experiences of adolescent depression in Porto Alegre, Brazil. We conducted 54 key-informant interviews with adolescents, parents, social workers, health workers, educators, and policy makers and two focus group discussions with 5 adolescents and 6 parents. Data were analysed using a framework approach and guided by the adolescents' personal narratives, with adult stakeholders' views supplementing these perspectives. Four main themes emerged, creating a relational model of adolescent depression that highlights isolation as a central component of the experience. In relation to the self, the experience of depression led to a feeling of detachment from others resulting from the sensation that usual interactions did not have the same meaning as before. This disruption of interactions is perceived as self-isolation and is described in relation to coping mechanisms. These findings shed light on important aspects of the identification and management of adolescent depression in Brazil. Since social interaction was a core component of the descriptions and experiences of depression, we speculate that promising interventions are those that could enhance the promotion of a supportive environment and interpersonal relationships.

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