Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)



Committee Chair(s)

Melissa Tehee


Jacqueline Gray


Melanie M. Domenech Rodríguez


Native Americans (NAs) share unique risk factors for poor mental health. In response, mental health providers must address barriers to treatment while making the most of low resource situations. One way to increase usefulness of treatment is to address the mechanisms underlying multiple mental health disorders. Rumination is a style of thinking marked by repeated thoughts about distress and is well-recognized as a diagnostic factor for underlying disorders in the general population. Secondary data from the Mood Disorder Assessment Validation with Northern Plains Indians (NPI) pilot study was used to examine the relationship between rumination and anxiety, depression, and substance abuse, as well as overall quality of life. Results indicated that as rumination increased, significant increases occurred in severity of symptoms reported for both women and men- but lower perceived quality of life only occurred in the presence of depressive symptoms. Significant differences arose between NPI women and men, with women reporting higher rumination, anxiety, and depression and men reporting higher substance abuse. Based on these results, rumination is useful as a transdiagnostic factor for NPI by uncovering the nature of maladaptive coping mechanisms. In addition, quality of life assessments are culturally-relevant ways to target maladaptive coping and replace unhealthy coping with more adaptive coping via culturally congruent methods.



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