New Insights Into Hikikomori – People Who Withdraw From Society For Months Or Years On End

By Emma Young Hikikomori is a dark term that describes people who stay holed up in their homes, or even just their bedrooms, isolated from everyone except their family, for many months or years. The phenomenon has captured the popular imagination with many articles appearing in the mainstream media in recent years, but, surprisingly, it isn’t well understood by psychologists.  The condition was first described in Japan, but cases have since been reported in countries as far apart as Oman, Indian, the US and Brazil. No one knows how many hikikomori exist (the term refers both to the condition and the people with it), but surveys suggest that 1.79 per cent of Japanese people aged 15-39 meet the criteria. However, while some assumptions about risk factors have been made, based largely on reports of specific cases, there has been a lack of population-based research. A new study, published in Frontiers in Psychiatry, plugs some of the knowledge gaps.  Roseline Yong and Kyoko Nomura analysed survey data from 3,287 male and female participants aged 15-39, who were randomly selected from 200 different urban and suburban municipalities all over Japan, representing a cross-section of Japanese society.  The participants answered questions about how often they left their home (and for those who didn’t, how long they’d remained inside). Researchers classified as hikikomori anyone who, for at least the past six months, never or rarely left their home, unle...
Source: BPS RESEARCH DIGEST - Category: Psychiatry & Psychology Authors: Tags: Cross-cultural Mental health Source Type: blogs

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Source: The Tohoku Journal of Experimental Medicine - Category: Research Authors: Tags: Tohoku J Exp Med Source Type: research
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Source: The Tohoku Journal of Experimental Medicine - Category: Research Authors: Tags: Tohoku J Exp Med Source Type: research
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Source: Journal of Psychiatric Research - Category: Psychiatry Source Type: research
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