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However, raising awareness of mental health problems simply by providing information about these problems may not be a simple solution – especially since individuals who are most knowledgeable about mental health problems (e.g.psychiatrists, mental health nurses) regularly hold strong stigmatizing beliefs about mental health themselves! As a consequence, attention has turned towards some methods identified in the social psychology literature for improving inter-group relations and reducing prejudice (Brown, 2010).This suggests that negative portrayals of schizophrenia in contemporary movies are common and are sure to reinforce biased beliefs and stigmatizing attitudes towards people with mental health problems.While the media may be getting better at increasing their portrayal of anti-stigmatising material over recent years, studies suggest that there has been no proportional decrease in the news media’s publication of stigmatising articles, suggesting that the media is still a significant source of stigma-relevant misinformation (Thornicroft, Goulden, Shefer, Rhydderch et al., 2013). : Stigma embraces both prejudicial attitudes and discriminating behaviour towards individuals with mental health problems, and the social effects of this include exclusion, poor social support, poorer subjective quality of life, and low self-esteem (Livingston & Boyd, 2010).
Blame can also be levelled at the entertainment media.For example, cinematic depictions of schizophrenia are often stereotypic and characterized by misinformation about symptoms, causes and treatment.In an analysis of English-language movies released between 1990-2010 that depicted at least one character with schizophrenia, Owen (2012) found that most schizophrenic characters displayed violent behaviour, one-third of these violent characters engaged in homicidal behaviour, and a quarter committed suicide.There are still attitudes within most societies that view symptoms of psychopathology as threatening and uncomfortable, and these attitudes frequently foster stigma and discrimination towards people with mental health problems.Such reactions are common when people are brave enough to admit they have a mental health problem, and they can often lead on to various forms of exclusion or discrimination – either within social circles or within the workplace. : Mental health stigma can be divided into two distinct types: is characterized by prejudicial attitudes and discriminating behaviour directed towards individuals with mental health problems as a result of the psychiatric label they have been given.