Academic journal article Researchers World

Prevalence of Depression in Iraqi Refugees Children Living in Kalar Camps

Academic journal article Researchers World

Prevalence of Depression in Iraqi Refugees Children Living in Kalar Camps

Article excerpt


The Iraqi civil war and conflicts since 2003, have created the largest population of middle-eastern refugees in the past 60 years (Devi, 2007). Based on the previous studies, some of the consequences of war and fugitiveness are psychological agitations mainly depression and PTSD disorder (Hollifield, 2002). On the other hand, the studies of epidemiology have identified depression as the most prevalent psychological disorder (Segal, et al, 2002). The type 1 depression disorder includes a set of disorders which share sadness, feeling of emptiness, irritable mood, and cognitive or physiological alterations. All of these problems significantly affect the performance of the people. Suicide is the most catastrophic consequence of depression (Goldeny, 2007) threating the patients all through the period they suffer from this psychological disorder. This has urged us to study depression and its treatment techniques as one of the main objectives of the research.

The 12-month prevalence of major depression is reported in 7% of the American people, and the number of female patients is 1.5 to 3 times more than males (Segal, et al, 2002). Although all people are prone to suffer from psychological disorders, it is especially more common in the homeless, jobless, illiterate, violence victims, harassed women, and neglected senior citizens (Onyut et al, 2009).The same pattern can be found in Iraq, but the several decades of war and civil conflicts have increased the depression rate to 4.7%, as one the countries with the highest depression prevalence (Al-Hamzawi, et al, 2015).

This highlights the necessity of addressing the issue. Refugees, due to such factors as compulsory immigration, harmful events, and resettlement in unfamiliar environments, are more susceptible to high rate of psychological disorders (Boehnlein, et al, 2004). Refugee is a person who has fled from his home-country, because of torture and harassments imposed on him due to his religion, ethnicity, nationality, political opinion, membership of a certain group, and s/he is unable to return to his home-country because of the above reasons (United Nation, 2001). Based on previous studies, these people are in danger of psychological disorders, especially depression and stress disorders after acute harms, due to numerous and prolong hardships they have experienced (Grritsen, et al, 2006). In extensive studies devoted to prevalence of depression among homeless fugitives, the prevalence rates varying from 9/8% to 67/4 % are reported (Teodorescu, et al., 2012).

Kids are the most vulnerable fugitives to psychological agitation during the war, since they face the pressure of nativization with a totally unfamiliar environment, as well as, the stress and pressure of escaping from their own countries (Fazel, 2005). Consequently, it is anticipated that depression rate in refugees is higher than in nonrefugees. Although few studies address this issue, they suffice to attest the remarkable prevalence of psychological disorders in refugee children (Bogic, et al., 2015; Fazel, 2005).

Naja et al. (2016) dealt with depression prevalence in Syrian fugitives. In this research on 310 Syrian fugitives out of Syrian boarders, depression was studied in shade of its relation with some demographic factors. The results indicated that 43% of those refugees suffered from various degrees of depression. This rate was 5.6% before the war. Based on this study, depression disorder was evident in Syrian fugitives, but no meaningful relationship was observed between the demographic features and depression.

Feyera (2015) conducted a similar study on 847 Somalian fugitives, and concluded that there were acute depression periods between refugees, and 38% of people suffered from varying degrees of depression. Further investigation indicated significant relationships between depression and such factors as gender, marital status, previous fugitiveness experience, witnessing the death of relatives or friends, experiencing traumatic events, and lack of shelter. …

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