POVERTY AND MENTAL HEALTH IN NIGERIA
Nigeria has one of the world's highest economic growth rates, averaging 7.4% according to the Nigeria economic report released in July 2014 by the World Bank. Poverty still remains significant at 33.1% in Africa's biggest economy, recently Nigeria slipped into recession under the watch of the present administration which may contribute to the rate of mental illness that has been on the increase. The paper focuses on those mental illness/psychological disorders that can be induced, sustained and promoted by poverty, bearing in mind that mental health researches has shown that the experience of poverty significantly influences the way we think, feel and act, the researchers recommended that mental health officers would be a powerful and effective tool in helping to reduce poverty by counteracting many of its self-perpetuating processes. They should, therefore, form a key component of any serious poverty reduction strategy/program with the goals of improving the political environment to facilitate policy change, identifying areas where the cognitive capabilities of those affected by poverty may be impaired or disrupted and further recognizing the particular groups at risk and providing assistance in any area of deficit.