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Gender Differences in Mental Disorder Prevalence Essay

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Updated: Apr 8th, 2021

The article “An Invariant Dimensional Liability Model of Gender Differences in Mental Disorder Prevalence” focuses on mental disorders and their differences in both men and women. Throughout this research article, the main research topic comes out clearly to be an impact of gender on diverse comorbid mental disorders. This happens due to the result of observed gender differences in mental disorders, where women are seen to have more effects to some extent compared to men. The existing gender differences in the prevalence rates of a number of mental disorders have been found in many research studies. In this respect, the article explains different theories and research studies along with their findings and conclusions on gender differences in specific disorders. Also, the mentioned article takes into account comorbidity (Harkness, Alavi, 2010).

The research problem investigated in the article is the fact that defines whether there exists gender difference in prevalence rate of disorders as reported by several epidemiological studies or not. Their study also wanted to find out if it was possible to make a reliable model to show how a specific gender affected mental disorders. From the study, it has been found that at first gender differences exist in mental disorders and have a great effect. Secondly, there are mood along with anxiety and disorders that are emotional commonly observed in females or women. Men are known to have a high rate of drug disorders. Women have higher internalizing level and men have higher externalizing level (Grant, & Weissman, 2007).

There are other studies that show that women are more influenced by such disorders as anxiety, dysthymia, social phobia, panic disorder, at high prevalence rates than men. On the other hand, men are associated with high rate of alcohol, drugs, and antisocial personality disorders. The researchers identified that these differences had also been identified in other research studies carried out before. It has been found that the social phobia and panic disorders are the internalizing dimensions that are at high prevalence rate in females. Contrary, the externalizing dimensions are mostly are as a result of with nicotine, drugs, and other disorders that are antisocially dependence (Leedy, & Ormrod, 2011).

  1. Are there gender differences that exist in disorder prevalence rates?
  2. Are disorders often comorbid?
  3. Is it possible to develop a liability model to elaborate on the effect of gender on different mental disorders?
  4. What are the patterns of disorder comorbidity?

When we try to find out the solution to the first question, we understand the existence of gender differences as far as mental disorders are concerned. Several researchers investigated the impact of gender on mental disorders but failed to consider the comorbidity. Making an attempt to answer the above question and basing the argument from the research findings, we understand the pattern of these disorders and gender impacts towards them and, thereby, solution of the research problem should be elaborated.

The research method employed in the research finding was experimental method, which helped the author find information on different causes of mental disorders of different genders, and therefore, makes specific conclusions about their effect. Laboratory experiment had to be conducted to come with the main cause and effect of mental disorders in men and women. The non-experimental methods include diagnostic interview schedule and clinical assessment, which cause the sufficient assistance to a great extent in finding issue of gender on mental disorders.

The data used in the study was gathered from a different participant from the initial wave. The study’s design of NESARC was descriptive (Grant & Dawson, 2006), and was able to yield reliable results. There was a wave, which represented a sample of civilians, population that was not institutionalized in the United States of America. There was a sample of African Americans where women represented approximately a half of the population. The participants also selected race and ethnicity using the defined category of census. The sample population was well selected, and this helped to avoid biasness in the study.

Diagnosis was conducted using the schedule of alcohol use disorder. Interviews were also conducted to gather more information on mental disorders. The results clearly indicated that the underlying common mental disorder structure was gender variant. Gender differences expressed in many different levels. Externalizing and internalizing liabilities were the source of differences in gender in prevalence rate of different related mental disorders.

High rate of anxiety and moody were observed in female analysis. The result indicated high rate of internalizing in women and high rate of externalizing in men. The model was therefore, gender invariance, where gender difference was well indicated in preferences rates. Different theories from different scholars have come up with different views and understanding on gender differences in prevalence rates. Conclusion have however, been made that high rate of internalizing in women and high rate of externalizing in men exists (Krueger et al., 2002). In reference to the results of the experiment, this is correct. This clearly indicates that, although the research had some limitations, it is to a great extent reliable. In a nutshell, the results of the analyses data have a close relationship with different theoretical views of many scholars.


Grant, B. F., & Dawson, D. A. (2006). Introduction to the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions. Alcohol Research & Health, 29, 74–78.

Grant, B. F., & Weissman, M. M. (2007). Gender and the prevalence of psychiatric disorders. In W. E. Narrow, M. B. First, P. J. Sirovatka, & D. A. Regier (Eds.), Gender and age co nsiderations in diagnoses of psychiatric: A research agenda for DSM-V (pp. 31–46). Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Association.

Harkness, K. L., Alavi, N., (2010). Gender differences on mental disorders: London, Oxford University Press.

Krueger, R. F., Hicks, B. M., Patrick, C. J., Carlson, S. R., Iacono, W. G., & McGue, M. (2002). Etiologic connections among substance dependence, antisocial behavior, and personality: Modeling the externalizing spectrum. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 111, 411–424. Web.

Leedy, P. D., & Ormrod, J. E. (2011). Practical research: Planning and design (10th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.

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