Religious involvement and mental disorders in mainland china.

Published online

Journal Article

PURPOSE: The present study aims to examine the association between religious involvement and mental disorder (anxiety disorder, mood disorder, alcohol use disorder) in a general Chinese population, and explore connections between religious belief and mental disorders in the Hui and Han ethnic groups. METHOD: Data were examined from a representative sample of 2,770 community-dwelling adults in the province of Ningxia located in western China. Self-reported religious attendance and the importance of religious in daily life were measured. The WHO Composite International Diagnostic Interview was used to diagnose mental disorders. RESULTS: In the overall sample, the importance of religious affiliation was positively associated with mental disorders (especially anxiety) (p<0.01). No association was found between any religious characteristic and mood disorders or alcohol use disorders. With regard to analyses within different ethnic groups, religious affiliation was positively associated with mental disorder in Han ethnicity (p<0.01), but not in Hui ethnicity. When stratified by age and ethnic group, religious affiliation was associated positively with mental disorder in younger Han (p<0.01); whereas high religiosity was associated positively with mental disorder in older Hui (p<0.05). Among older Hui, however, religious affiliation was inversely associated with mood disorder (p<0.05). CONCLUSIONS: In contrast to most previous studies in Western populations, religious involvement is less likely to be inversely related to mental disorder in Mainland China, although this association varies by age and ethnic group.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Wang, Z; Koenig, HG; Zhang, Y; Ma, W; Huang, Y

Published Date

  • 2015

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 10 / 6

Start / End Page

  • e0128800 -

PubMed ID

  • 26030906

Pubmed Central ID

  • 26030906

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1932-6203

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1371/journal.pone.0128800


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States