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Locura Research Paper

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Introduction
Locura is a culture bound syndrome that affects Latin Americans and Hispanics, regardless of where they are born, in the United States or South America (Jilek 2001:5,9). Locura has also been documented in immigrants from the Caribbean Islands (Razzouk 2011:517). In Columbia, Locura is also known as “ataques de locura” madness attacks, it is attributed to a spell known as “maleficio”. Locura is commonly associated with other culture bound syndromes thru out Central and South America, such as ataques de nervious (nervios) and possession syndromes (Piñeros 1998:1425).

Definition
Locura is often grouped with other mental health disorders such as schizophrenia (Jilek 2001:1-5), conversion, and dissociative disorders (Piñeros 1998:1425-8).
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In a study by Sarah Garcia-Siberman (1998:1-12), mental health issues can be seen at any age from the very young to the elderly, those with a higher level of education are less likely to develop cultural-bound syndromes. They are more likely to seek out the assistant of mental health providers (psychotherapy) and take medication (pharmacological treatment) if needed. This makes since to me, when someone is educated and are able to cope with the stresses of everyday life, the person is better equip to deal with whatever changes occur, making mental health issues less likely in this population. The older population and those that have little to no education, view these syndromes as evil, spiritual possession, or witchcraft, which can only be cured through herbal remedies, religious or shaman healers, and ritual ceremonies (Piñeros 1998:1425). If a culture is isolated and has no contact with civilization, I can see why they would not be able to seek professional help. Different cultures and religions believe in different types of healing practices, there are a lot of Americans that use herbal remedies to cure all sorts of illnesses. If these remedies don’t work, it is the responsibility of the individual and family members to seek out proper medical treatment for the
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