Intellectual disability and autism in adults influence psychological treatments for mental health conditions
AffiliationUniversity of Chester
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AbstractMental health conditions are often underdiagnosed in adults with intellectual disability and do not always receive psychological interventions as recommended by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellent guidelines. To realise the national UK programme’s aim of stopping overuse of medications in people with intellectual disability, it is important that these individuals have access to appropriate non-pharmacological interventions. We examined the relationship between an individual’s level of intellectual disability and presence or absence of autism with access to relevant non-pharmacological interventions from specialist community intellectual disability services. A cross-sectional study of adults accessing four specialist intellectual disability services in North West England in 2019. There was high prevalence of mental health co-morbidity, even higher for autistic adults. However, a relatively small percentage of the study population were receiving psychological interventions. The most frequent non-pharmacological intervention was positive behaviour support plan, irrespective of comorbid mental illnesses. Not having access to psychological interventions for the treatment of mental illness could result in poor health outcomes and increasing health inequalities. The study highlights the need for developing psychological interventions particularly for those with moderate to severe intellectual disability and for those with associated autism. This large sample study examined the relationship between intellectual disability level and presence of autism with accessing psychological interventions.
CitationMills, R., Soper, P., Michelet, F., Stewart, A., & Jaydeokar, S. (2022 - forthcoming). Intellectual disability and autism in adults influence psychological treatments for mental health conditions. Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities, vol,(issue), pp. doi:
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