Concurring to recent studies, individuals living in rural zones have higher mental health conditions than their urban counterparts (Rural Information Hub, 2019a; Wearer, et al., 2013). According to the Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality (CBHSO) (2017), roughly 6.5 million individuals living in rural regions experience mental well-being issues. Between 2000 and 2018, the suicide rate in rural America expanded by 48% (Pettrone and Curtin, 2020). This information highlights the mental well-being emergency that rural areas and marginalized communities are facing. Mental health services in India are dismissed and require urgent consideration from governments, policymakers, and community organizations.
Mental Health Needs in Rural Communities
In spite of the National Mental Health Program and the National Rural Health Mission since 1982, there’s little capacity to supply mental health services in rural areas. Mental sickness in rural zones is predominant. In spite of the high mental well-being needs of rural communities, there are likely to be treatment gaps. Results from the National Survey of Mental Health Use and Health: around 8.6 million nonmetropolitan grown-ups reported a mental illness (MI) in 2021, which equates to 22.7% of nonmetropolitan grown-ups. Furthermore, 5.1%, or 1.9 million, of nonmetropolitan grown-ups detailed severe suicidal thoughts during the year. Mental well-being care needs are frequently neglected in numerous rural communities around the world.
Impact of Rural Lifestyle on Positive Wellbeing
- Rural life has a positive impact on the quality of life. The socio-demographic characteristics of rural zones incorporate a huge elderly population, low levels of education, low income, and high self-employment. In addition, the cost of living is lower, families are larger, and divorce rates are lower. In general, rural populaces have an adaptable social life, depend intensely on shared resources, know each other well, and have solid social support systems. Freedom, self-sufficiency, and creativity are exceedingly esteemed, and deal with the common, “issues of life”; and well-being issues (Sav et al. 2015). From a social point of see, provincial characteristics incorporate social cohesion, and individual well-being (Nicholson 2008).
- Proximity to natural territories within the countryside, they have a close relationship with animals, particularly animals. It is known that animals and certain types of natural settings can have a positive impact on mental well-being. Animal welfare in rural zones can ease the effects of pain and emotional trouble (Yuri et al. 2014).
Also Read: List of Famous Mental Hospitals in India
Rural Outlook for Health and Mental Health
- In rural regions, health is synonymous with the “ability to work”. (Weinert et al Long 1987).
- Basic habits are conventional and natural, such as eating well, resting well, working hard, exercising, being active, socializing, trusting God, and relaxing in open spaces, safety and freedom are the keys to a great life. Gessert et al. 2015).
- • The cost of looking for help for mental wellbeing issues is exceptionally low. Mental health disorders such as misery, uneasiness, depression, and anxiety are frequently covered up. People in rural ranges consider these issues that others need and don’t have to be stressed about (John Son et al. 2011).
Barriers to Mental Health in Rural Communities
- Homelessness and lack of support, uprooted families, social isolation, depression, inadequate transport, and lack of access or need for services are characteristics of rural areas (Bentham and Haynes, 1986; Shucksmith et al, 1996). (Usually not good for well-known geographers) that doesn’t give protection against mental damage.
- People and their families in rural zones are less willing to report mental health issues since they are concerned about the shame related to mental health issues.
- They cannot get individual mental counseling due to constrained budgetary resources.
- Delays in looking for help can be exacerbated by low-risk perception and low certainty in the effectiveness of safety measures, as well as by the safe acceptance of the risk of death (Gessert et al. 2015). The cost of looking for help for mental health issues is exceptionally low. Mental well-being disorders such as depression and anxiety are often hidden. They consider these issues that others require and do not have to be stressed approximately (John Child et al. 2011). The need for awareness and help-seeking can make mental sickness exceptionally stigmatized.
- Subcommunities restrict privacy and anonymity and see self-harm as more dangerous to the person than serious mental health issues.
- Barriers to getting to rural ranges incorporate transportation challenges. Need for transportation and long trips to mental health centers (Brems, et al., 2006).
- Mental health services in rural ranges are understaffed. The lack of knowledge of rural regions and the lack of labor support resources contribute to the reluctance of well-being experts to work in these regions.
- Smaller populaces have more social systems and the proficient standards related to the urban model – security and boundaries – are troublesome to implement (Hastings and Cohn 2013; Policy for Rural Mental Health (Report)) [Online] 2016).
- Rural individuals, particularly those in developing nations, are more likely to get counseling than to engage in self-reflection or treatment choices to address mental sickness issues.
Rural Regions & Mental Health Awareness
- They conduct outreach exercises along with fostering school spirit. They implement short-term and long-term mental health programs as well as private programs for the mentally ill.
- In spite of many government health services, they don’t give satisfactory psychological support.
- NGOs and public-private associations fulfill certain rural health needs; Kumar (2011) provides clarification on some aspects. They conduct outreach exercises along with fostering school spirit. They implement short-term and long-term mental health programs as well as private programs for the mentally ill.
- Make efforts to ensure the appropriate execution of measures to address mental well-being and rural health issues. Numerous government and non-government agencies have begun advertising new services.
- Strategies such as telehealth administrations for rural zones. These services incorporate client-clinician interaction by means of video or phone chat, online interventions, social media, and group discussion forums.