When it comes to treating mental health conditions like depression and anxiety, Bahrain is far ahead of most other Middle Eastern countries.
However, this doesn’t mean that treatment centres in Bahrain offer international levels of care, and certain advancements still need to be made.
A paper in World Psychiatry found that while Bahrain had one of the highest numbers of psychiatric beds and psychiatrists in the region in 2007, the estimated total health budget was too low to provide adequate mental health services for all those who required it.
And many people in Bahrain require mental health treatment. This year, in 2019, Bahrain ranked 5th in suicide rates among Arab nations, according to the World Health Organisation.
Depression therapy and psychiatric treatment in Bahrain, then, should be a top priority.
In the 2011 WHO-AIMS Report, Bahrain was reported to have only one mental health hospital. This is the Psychiatric Hospital at Salmaniya Medical Complex in Manama which, in 2010, had more than 250 beds. There are also four facilities for outpatients and two centres for day treatment available elsewhere in the country for those with depression and other illnesses.
Unfortunately, there are no community inpatient units or residential facilities operating at present, and mental health in Bahrain is suffering as a consequence.
Rates of depression in Bahrain
Although there are no official government figures on the number of people living with depression in Bahrain, there are numerous studies that show rates across different demographics.
One paper looked at patients in primary care centres and found that 19.3 percent had lifetime depression and 5.6 percent had current depression (read about how to treat depression here). Of those who suffered from mental illness in the past, only 41 percent had received treatment.
Research was also conducted on postnatal depression in Bahraini primary healthcare centres. It was found that 37.1 percent of mothers exhibited symptoms.
The study revealed two risk factors associated with this type of depression: a history of depressive symptoms and a lack of support from the husband.
A third study looked at medical students at the Arabian Gulf University of Bahrain. It was found that 18.87 percent of first year and 31.88 percent of sixth year students showed some symptoms of depression.
There was no significant difference in rates between males and females regardless of the year, however.
Barriers to depression treatment in Bahraini society
Despite the above prevalence of depression, only a small percent of the population receive the treatment that they require. This is because mental illness in Bahraini society tends to be hidden away. Gulf Weekly reports that fields such as psychotherapy are stigmatised in Bahrain, leading to many avoiding professional assistance.
This negligence leads to many negative results. As Trade Asia writes, there has been an increase in the number of attempted suicides by 14 to 20 year olds in Bahrain in the last few years alone. These people are mostly crying for help and usually suffer from severe depression or stress.
This stigma has also affected local marriages, and individuals are refusing the initial proposal or requesting a divorce because of known or perceived mental illness.
To combat these negative effects, greater awareness through public discussion is required, and depression treatment in Bahrain is of vital importance.
International treatment options for Bahrainis
In this current healthcare environment, it is not uncommon for locals to seek help with depression beyond the shores of Bahrain. By doing so, they can find high standards of care in a setting free from negative social stigma.
Camino Recovery offers all of this and more at our private retreat on the Andalusian Coast in Spain.
With our personalised treatment programmes, we will help work out the root cause of your depression while encouraging you to develop positive habits so you can lead a more balanced lifestyle once back in Bahrain.
A complete mental health package
Our programmes are run by and administered by a team of medical and support staff that combine more than 80 years of experience in the field.
Together, these treatments produce long-term results that ensure you fly back to Bahrain with confidence and the ability to integrate into society without any further issues.
Guests staying at Camino Recovery will stay in our private villa, fully furnished with everything they need. As well as lush gardens and a swimming pool, we are also located a few minutes from some of Spain’s best beaches.
Our retreat is designed for complete relaxation, putting you in the optimal frame of mind to eliminate your depression.
We are situated an hour’s drive from Malaga Airport which can be reached after a 12-hour flight from Manama. A personal driver will pick you up after you have arrived, too, making the journey to Camino Recovery that much simpler. Addiction recovery abroad is the best way that Bahrainis can seek the assistance they need to overcome their depression.