According to mental illness statistics from the National Alliance on Mental Illness, approximately 1 in 5 adults in the U.S. suffers from a mental disease. Although mental health in general is increasingly in the news, it is important to keep in mind that, just like physical illness, mental health issues widely vary in terms of type and severity. Understanding mental illness on a case by case basis is therefore the best path to successful mental health treatment. At Encore Health Group of Tennessee, we understand that an individualized approach to each patient’s illness is an effective way to tailor your treatment.
Mental Illness Statistics: Demographics
On average, 19 percent of American adults grapple with some type of mental disorder. Of these, 20 percent are white adults, and 17 percent are Hispanic-Americans. Also, 16 percent of African-Americans and 15 percent of Asian-Americans have mental illness.
The largest numbers of adults with mental illness are in the mixed or multiracial and LGBTQ communities. About 27 percent of multiracial adults and 37 percent of LGBTQ individuals in the U.S. have a mental illness.
Mental Illness Statistics USA By Category
Mental illness falls into a number of categories. Among the most common among Americans are mood disorders and anxiety disorders. Substance abuse disorders, psychotic disorders and trauma-linked disorders are also prevalent.
Mood disorders include depression and bipolar disorder. Sadness that is severe and persistent is the hallmark of depression. An individual with bipolar disorder experiences extreme highs, or mania, and profound lows, or depression. Each fluctuation can last several weeks or more. Overall, 10 percent of American adults have a mood disorder.
Anxiety disorders affect the largest percentage of the U.S. population at 19 percent. General anxiety disorder, panic disorder, social anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder and phobias are part of this group. One of the causes of anxiety disorders is severe stress. It is no surprise that substance use disorder often co-occurs with anxiety disorders.
Schizophrenia, a psychotic disorder, affects only about 1 percent of people in the U.S. Trauma-linked illnesses such as PTSD and acute stress disorder affect about 4 percent of the population. Substance use disorders co-occurring with another mental disorder affect at least 4 percent of the U.S. population.
The Mental Illness Care Gap
Despite the significant numbers of Americans that have mental illness, less than one-half sought out medical care for their conditions in 2018. This could be partially due to the lack of health insurance among people with mental illness. It could also reflect a lack of access to psychiatric care. There are 60 counties in the U.S. that do not have a single mental health practitioner.
Another factor that keeps people from seeking care for a mental illness is the stigma. To seek help for an illness, you have to admit you need help. That could lead others to form a negative opinion of you or cause discrimination. For example, an employer could refuse to hire you due to your mental illness. According to the Mayo Clinic, stigma comes from people’s lack of understanding. It can make a mental illness worse by destroying your self-esteem.
An effective treatment plan for mental illness, substance use disorder or a combination of the two should include a mental health evaluation by qualified medical professionals. Through one-on-one conversations and observation, your medical team can customize a treatment plan to address your individual needs and help you meet your treatment goals.
Encore Health Group Can Help
With locations in Columbia, Jackson and Cordova, Tennessee, Encore Health Group works with mental health patients to help them learn about their illness and get the professional help they need to move toward recovery. Get in touch with us today online to find out more about our mental health services.