New Study Says 43 Million Americans Have Mental Illness


A new report says that more than 43 million American adults had a diagnosable mental illness in 2013. Most are suffering from severe depression, it also says.

The U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration issues an annual report on mental health issues and substance abuse in the United States. Although the number of people with possible mental illness is high, the report's numbers are almost exactly the same as they were in 2012. That 2012 report, however, showed significant growth in mental illness rates over those seen a decade prior, with rates from 2002-2011 growing significantly.

The SAMHSA report found that about 10 million adults live with serious mental illness, 15 million have depressive episodes. Most with long- or short-term depression contemplate suicide while about 1.3 million follow through with attempts.

Although the report's findings focus on adults, SAMHSA did find that ten percent of children between the ages of 12 and 17 have suicidal thoughts and of those, only about 38 percent were treated for depression.

About 34.6 million adults received treatment for mental health. Between 2002 and 2011 the rates of adults receiving care for mental health were 12.8 percent to 13.8 percent.

"It is a serious issue that millions of Americans are needlessly affected by mental illness when they can get effective treatment to restore their well-being," SAMHSA Administrator Pamela Hyde said.

The SAMHSA report can be found here.


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