‘Sub-Cultures’ At Greater Risk Of Mental Health Issues

Keeping up with and challenging the latest research into mental health is what keeps our Manchester counselling service the best at what we do, so we read this new research from the University of Manchester with great interest.

The results of the study suggest that members of alternative sub-cultures, including those that identify as ‘goth’, ‘emo’ or ‘metal’ are at greater risk of mental health issues which could culminate in self harm, according to Planet Radio.

Dr Peter Taylor, who is a clinical psychologist at the university, said that it has long been considered a myth that these sub-cultures may have greater vulnerabilities to these illnesses, however, in his review of psychology literature, he finds that these individuals do seem to be a greater risk.

However, he also admits that this data needs to be interpreted. Many people put the presence of mental health issues within these communities down to the sub-culture itself, as well as the music and media they enjoy.  Dr Taylor, however, believes it is more correlated to society’s reaction to these sub-cultures: “Victimisation, stigma and hate crime may explain the greater risk these individuals face. A prime example of that is the aggression faced by Sophie Lancaster in 2007,” he said.

Sophie Lancaster was murdered by a group of teenage boys, after being attacked with her boyfriend for the way that they were dressed. The Sophie Lancaster Foundation now works to raise awareness of the victimisation of sub-cultures within the UK.

Dr Taylor hopes that this research will help organisations identify persons who are at risk moving forward.

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