Family perspectives on severe mental disorders and relapse prevention: a qualitative study

Sawab, Ah Yusuf, Rizki Fitryasari, R. R.Sri Endang Pujiastuti, Permana Putra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background. The relapse of severe mental disorders is still quite high due to the lack of family knowledge in treating schizophrenic patients. The family treats and prevents the relapse of severe mental disorder by taking the sufferer to spiritual treatment, a shaman, being shackled (pasung) because of the assumption that the cause is evil from ghosts, magic, curses, and unbelief. Objective. The purpose of this study is to explore the experience of families preventing the relapse of severe mental disorders. Materials and Methods. This study is qualitative research with a phenomenological approach. The sampling was conducted by purposive sampling with 9 participants. Data were collected using semi-structured in-depth interviews with audio-recorded, transcribed verbatim, validated, and analyzed based on Colaizzi’s method of data analysis. Results. Four themes were generated, including: i) the perception of severe mental illness; ii) the causes of relapse; iii) family prevention for severe mental disorders relapse; iv) relapse becomes helplessness and a burden on the family. Conclusions. Lack of family knowledge of severe mental disorders, prevention of relapse, and lack of social support causes helplessness and a burden on the family. Increased knowledge, coping skills, and support for families with Schizophrenia are very important to help relapse prevention and the burden that arises.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2572
JournalJournal of Public Health in Africa
Issue numberS2
Publication statusPublished - 25 May 2023


  • family
  • relapse prevention
  • severe mental illness


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