Article

Suicidal risk, depression, and religiosity: A study of women in a general hospital in Santiago de Chile.

Universidad del Desarrollo, Santiago, Chile.
Asia-Pacific Psychiatry (Impact Factor: 0.47). 09/2013; DOI: 10.1111/appy.12102
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT The purpose of the present study is to compare the role of spiritual and religious beliefs in the prevention of suicidal risk among depressive women with suicidal ideation or attempts, treated in the psychiatric unit of a general hospital in Santiago de Chile (Servicio de Psiquiatría del Hospital del Salvador) between 2010 and 2011.
The relationship among severity of depression, suicidal risk, and religiosity is explored in women treated in Servicio de Psiquiatría del Hospital del Salvador. The sociodemographic and clinical characteristics of believers (n = 121) and nonbelievers (n = 22) were compared, and their global mental health was assessed, as well as their rating in scales for depression, anxiety, aggressivity, and impulsivity.
Most of the patients self-reported to belong to Catholic or other Christian churches. There were few statistically significant differences between them and nonbelievers, who were younger, had more years of education, were more frequently employed, and lived alone or with their parents. When comparing the least religious and the most religious quartiles, there were no differences in the type of affective disorder, attendance to temples, or self-appraisal of religiosity. Nonbelievers had more history of previous suicidal attempts and had more relatives committing suicide.
In a country where most of the population is believer, self-reported religiosity seems to have a nonsignificant association with suicidality and severity of depression. Our results could be biased given the small number of nonbelievers in the sample.

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