Ivelisse Torres Fernández http://orcid.org/0000-0002-4573-7597

Steve R. Pereira

Jen Aicart

Gonzalo Salas


The focus of this paper is to discuss the cycle of migration and its psychological impact on the lives of immigrants. An overview of current migration trends, a discussion on the cycle of immigration (Casas, 2014), and its psychological consequences are presented. A qualitative phenomenological approach was utilized to analyze the stories of four immigrants, which resulted in a thematic analysis that discusses the cycle of immigration and its impact. The paper concludes with a discussion of implications, limitations, and future research.



migration, cycle of immigration, psychological impact

Achotegui, J. (2009). Migración y salud mental. El síndrome del inmigrante con estrés crónico y múltiple (síndrome de Ulises). Revista Zerbitzuan, 46, 163-171.

Alvarado, R. (2008). Salud mental en inmigrantes. Revista Chilena de Salud Pública, 12(1), 37-41. American Psychological Association, Presidential Task Force on Immigration. (2012). Crossroads: The psychology of immigration in the new century. Washington DC: Author.

American Psychological Association. (2013). Working with immigrant-origin clients: An update for mental health professionals. Washington DC: APA.

Arbona, C., Olvera, N., Rodriguez, N., Hagan, J., Linares, A., & Wiesner, M. (2010). Acculturative stress among documented and undocumented Latino immigrants in the United States. Hispanic Journal of Behavioral Sciences, 32(3), 362-384. http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0739986310373210

Arredondo, P., Gallardo-Cooper, M., Delgado-Romero, E. A., & Zapata, A. L. (2014). Culturally responsive counseling with Latinas/os. Alexandria, VA: American Counseling Association.

Asakura, H., & Torres Falcón, M. (2013). Migración femenina centroamericana y violencia de género: Pesadilla sin límites en Zona Franca. Revista del Centro de Estudios Interdisciplinario sobre Mujeres, 21(22), 75-86.

Berry, J. W. (1997). Immigration, acculturation and adaptation. Applied Psychology: An International Review, 46(1), 5-34.

Casas, M. (2014). Caution: Immigration can be harmful to your mental health. Latino/a Psychology Today, 10(1), 6-9.

Hipolito-Delgado, C., & Mann, J. (2012). Illuminating the shadows: Sociopolitical and counseling needs of undocumented Mexican immigrants. Interamerican Journal of Psychology, 46(3), 395-402.

Kirmayer, L. J., Narasiah, L., Munoz, M., Rashid, M., Ryder, A. G., Guzder, J., … & Pottie, K. (2011). Common mental health problems in immigrants and refugees: General approach in primary care. Canadian Medical Association Journal, 183(2), 959-967.

McNeill, B. W., & Cervantes, J. M. (Eds.). (2008). Latina/o healing practices: Mestizo and Indigenous perspectives. New York, NY: Routledge.

Migration Policy Institute. (2017a). Frequently Requested Statistics on Immigrants and Immigration in the United States. Retrieved from http://migrationpolicy.org/print/15856#.WSb2PRPyvOQ

Migration Policy Institute. (2017 b). Central American Immigrants in the United States. Retrieved from http://migrationpolicy.org/article/central-american-immigrants-united-states

Organista, K. C. (2007). Solving Latino psychosocial and health problems: Theory, practice, and populations. New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Pereira, S. R. & Torres Fernández, I. (2016). Sanando el espanto de la opresion: Celestial healing as a curative factor for Latinxs. Latina/o Psychology Today, 3(2), 22-26.

Pereira, S. R., Ramos, S. L., & Torres Fernández, I. (2017). Semillas de empoderamiento en la frontera: Seeds of empowerment in the borderland. Latino/a Psychology Today, 4(1), 14-17.

Pew Research Center. (2016a). International migration: Key findings from the U.S., Europe and the world. Retrieved from http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2016/12/15/international-migration-key-findings-from-the-u-s-europe-and-the-world/

Pew Research Center. (2016b). 5 facts about the U.S. rank in worldwide migration. Retrieved From http://www.pewresearch.org/5factsabouttheusrank

Pumariega, A. J., & Rothe, E. (2011). Leaving no children or families outside: The challenges of immigration. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 80(4), 505-515.

Sue, D. W., & Sue, D. (2013). Counseling the Culturally Diverse: Theory and Practice, Sixth Edition. Hoboken, New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OCDE) and United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA). (2013). World Migration in Figures. Retrieved from www.oecd.org/els/mig/World-Migration-in-Figures.pdf

Torres, H. L., O’Conor, A., Mejia, C., Camacho, Y., & Long, A. (2011). The American dream: Racism towards Latino/as in the U.S. and the experience of trauma symptoms. Interamerican Journal of Psychology, 45(3), 363-368.

Torres Fernández, I. (2015). A social justice perspective on children's mental health: A borderlands view. Communique, 43(6), 1, 24-26.
Townsend, J., & Oomen, C. (2015). Before the boat: Understanding the migrant journey. Brussels: Migration Policy Institute Europe.

United States Department of Health and Human Services, The Office of Minority Health. (2012). Mental health and Hispanics. Retrieved from http://minorityhealth.hhs.gov/templates/content.aspx?lvl=3&lvlID=9&ID=6477

Vilar Peyrí, E., & Eibenschutz Hartman, C. (2009). Migración y salud mental: Un problema emergente de salud pública. Revista Gerencia y Salud, 6(13), 11-32.
Cómo citar
Torres Fernández, I., Pereira, S., Aicart, J., & Salas, G. (2018). Crossing International Borders in Search of a Better Life: Examining the Psychological Impact of the Immigration Experience. Universitas Psychologica, 16(5), 1-15. https://doi.org/10.11144/Javeriana.upsy16-5.cibs
Artículos más leídos del mismo autor/a