The inclusion of sexuality as an essential aspect of comprehensive care for individuals with mental disorders

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Abstract

The scope of this study was to understand the representations of mental health service patients and professionals concerning the sexuality of the former. Thirty-nine patients and 54 professionals of the public mental health services, divided up into six focal groups, were interviewed individually. Data analysis was based on the Structural Analysis of Narrative technique. Individuals with mental disorders do not perceive sexual health as a right and have difficulty taking care of themselves in the face of gender stereotypes, and for the contexts related with exclusion and poverty. Among the mental health service professionals, sexuality negation of mentally-ill individuals had been the commom representation. They classify this behavior as “not a normal representation” and believe that it must be restrained. Dialogues about sexuality with users are almost inexistent. Mental health service professionals are not prepared for integral assistance, which requires permanent qualification and the inclusion of this subject in the fundamental formation of health related careers, in a interdisciplinary way.

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Barbosa, J. A. G., Souza, M. C. M. R., & Freitas, M. I. de F. (2015). The inclusion of sexuality as an essential aspect of comprehensive care for individuals with mental disorders. Ciencia e Saude Coletiva, 20(7), 2165–2172. https://doi.org/10.1590/1413-81232015207.01792014

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