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Treatment of mental health problems in refugees and asylum seekers 

Treatment of mental health problems in refugees and asylum seekers
Treatment of mental health problems in refugees and asylum seekers

Giulia Cossu

, Antonio Preti

, and Mauro Giovanni Carta

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date: 26 January 2022

Refugees from war zones and asylum seekers are exposed to a wide range of traumas, including persecution, humiliation, gender-based violence, human rights violations, and significant family losses. This results in a statistically higher risk of trauma-related mental disorders. However, refugees and asylum seekers are a heterogeneous population, as far as their gender, age, ethnic, cultural, educational and socio-economic background are concerned. There is no certainty that the Western-centred therapies will be effective in the treatment of the trauma-related mental disorders of refugees and asylum seekers. This chapter summarizes the currently available evidence on the mental health of refugees from war zones and asylum seekers, focusing in particular on the results of randomized controlled trials of psychosocial and other non-conventional interventions applied to refugees and asylum seekers. Culturally sensitive approaches, which activate same-cultural community network support, are more likely to contribute to the effectiveness of the care process.

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