Which mental health disorders impact refugees?

Sketch by Elizabeth Thayer

Studies confirm that refugees are at substantially higher risk than the general population for a variety of specific psychiatric disorders. These disorders include:

  • PTSD
  • Major depression
  • Generalized anxiety
  • Panic attacks
  • Adjustment disorder
  • Somatization (Medical symptoms that have no known cause but can be linked to stress)
  • Chemical changes in the brain
  • Multigenerational trauma

Exposure to torture is the strongest predictor of symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder among refugees.

(Kirmayer, L. J., Narasiah, L., Munoz, M., Rashid, M., Ryder, A. G., Guzder, J., Hassan, G., Rousseau, C., Pottie, K., & Canadian Collaboration for Immigrant and Refugee Health (CCIRH) (2011). Common mental health problems in immigrants and refugees: general approach in primary care. CMAJ : Canadian Medical Association journal = journal de l'Association medicale canadienne, 183(12), E959–E967. https://doi.org/10.1503/cmaj.0...)

Refugee voices on mental health

Rohingya Woman
Rohingya Women  ·  Myanmar

Humanitarian aid workers report on what they see in Hope Hospital in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh:

Add Impact to Your Inbox
Sign up for our emails to get inspiring stories and updates delivered straight to you.
© 2024 Their Story is Our Story Privacy Policy
Their Story is Our Story is a 501(c)3 Non-Profit Organization under the United States Internal Revenue Code. All donations are tax-deductible. Our tax identification number is 812983626.