More and more sociocentric societies will become egocentric societies due to globalization, and this could lead to higher rates of common mental disorders. With the increase in migration around the world, social isolation will be exacerbated and the built-in social support system will continue to decline within families. Connecting globalization to mental health oppression is crucial, especially when uncontrolled global warming threatens so much. It will be important for doctors and academics working in high-income countries to critically reflect on their own practice and to question accepted wisdom about the provision of mental health services.
Mental health is a state of well-being in which people recognize their abilities, are able to cope with the normal stresses of life, work productively and fruitfully and make a contribution to their communities. However, it is increasingly clear that, in this era of rapid globalization, mental health professionals, social scientists and anthropologists must come together and engage in a constructive dialogue aimed at developing an intercultural understanding of how best to meet the mental health needs of people around the world. The good news is that seeing mental health and culture as interconnected allows us to find solutions that work both for the individual and for society. Biological explanations of mental illness permeated public consciousness, and the search began for magical compounds that could correct the chemical imbalances that supposedly caused mental illness.
The alluring appeal of biological psychiatry In high-income countries, mental health services tend to revolve around psychiatry, the branch of medicine that deals with the study and treatment of mental illnesses, emotional disorders and abnormal behavior. In response to the problems caused or highlighted by globalization, it is necessary to address the issues of psychiatric training, service delivery and social policy and to increase the emphasis placed on transcultural psychiatry in mental health curricula. This statement urged all components of the WPA to raise public and governmental awareness that the effects of globalization will only be optimized when improvements in health and well-being become central objectives of national economic policies and of the design and management of the international economic system; and that mental health is part of public health. Despite the apparent sophistication of laws, policies, services and treatments for mental illness in high-income countries, the outcomes for people with mental health problems may not be better than in low-income countries.
Despite these concerns, biological psychiatry continues to exert a strong influence on the delivery of mental health services in high-income countries, such as the United Kingdom and the United States. The cost of not acting can be estimated in the growing number of people whose lives are affected by mental health problems around the world. By sharing knowledge, low-income countries can benefit from the hard lessons learned in high-income countries, and high-income countries can look at how mental health difficulties are understood and treated from a new perspective.