Adolescents, beliefs and help-seeking

PhD Thesis

Pascua-Leones, K. 2019. Adolescents, beliefs and help-seeking. PhD Thesis Canterbury Christ Church University Salomons Centre for Applied Psychology
AuthorsPascua-Leones, K.
TypePhD Thesis
Qualification nameDClinPsychol

Background. Mental health services remains the least preferred choice for help-seeking in adolescents. To date, there is scarce literature regarding adolescents’ beliefs about mental health services and how their beliefs have impacted on the decision to seek professional help.

Methods. Ten adolescents between 16- to 18- years old, recruited from Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) in London, participated in the study. Interviews were analysed using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA).

Results. Five superordinate themes emerged: a multifaceted understanding of beliefs, origination of beliefs, management of beliefs, the therapeutic process as a mechanism for change and the transformed self. Thirteen subthemes were found.

Conclusions. The changing nature of beliefs was attributed to adolescents’ experiences of the therapeutic relationship, which led into an evolved sense of self. Adults were relied upon to facilitate the help-seeking process whilst attempting to maintain autonomy. The findings were discussed in relation to previous research and theory, and methodological limitations were acknowledged. Research, clinical practice and policy implications were described, which included further research into the role of beliefs, the importance of fostering person-centred care, and the need for age-appropriate resources to promote public awareness of CAMHS.

KeywordsAdolescents, beliefs, mental health, help-seeking
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Publication process dates
Deposited10 Oct 2019
Output statusUnpublished
Accepted author manuscript
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