Kristin in Nicaragua

depresión y presión

as part of my interview schedule, with every abuela in my study i am conducting a "health and wellbeing interview". the interview question guide is loosely based on the interview designed by my advisor, linda garro, which we used in our work at the center on everyday lives of family (my last GSR research job at UCLA). i ask about personal and family health, recent illness episodes, any chronic conditions, and views of how migration has impacted health and wellbeing. like all my interviews, this one can last anywhere from 45 minutes to 3 hours, depending on the length of women’s responses - what they want to say and share with me. while i haven’t analyzed the data systematically, i am finding particularly interesting the fact that in many of the interviews, women talk about "depresión" and "presión". at first, i wasn’t sure if this was the same thing, all part of one psychosomatic complaint. but as i’ve been able to ask more specific questions, it has become clear that depression is a common, shared experience for women. and like i wrote about in my master’s thesis, women link it to "preocupaciones" (worries) or "pensar mucho" (thinking too much). i definitely have to think a lot more about this, about what in medical anthropology we’d call women’s "explanatory model" of depression. and about "presión", women are referring to high blood pressure, which sometimes they have been diagnosed with, and sometimes not. one positive thing about the current Ortega administration is that medical care for the majority of Nicaragua’s poor has improved, so once diagnosed with a chronic condition such as high bp (or diabetes, another common complaint among abuelas in my study), people are able to receive medical care and their prescription medications essentially free of charge. still, the challenge for me is sorting out the relationship between these physiological conditions and the emotional dimensions of women’s lives, including their experiences of migration. big big challenge for my dissertation...

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1 comentario

mara -

Kristin, sounds really interesting. Can't wait to talk to you about this more when you come back!
¿Y esta publicidad? Puedes eliminarla si quieres
¿Y esta publicidad? Puedes eliminarla si quieres