Mental Health Problems
Mental health is an issue that is sadly overlooked when money and resources can be better spent on physical care. It is too often views as a niche area of medical care. However, this undermines the fact that a quarter of adults in the US have some form of mental health disorder.
Mental illnesses can affect people in many situations, at any age. We see this from anxiety disorders in childhood to a serious of issues throughout adulthood and senior life.
Key Issues Of Mental Health With Children And Adolescents
It is easy to think of mental illnesses as relating to adults. However, stress, anxiety and other issues can affect the young too. Teenagers are especially susceptible to triggers from behaviors and social environments that could lead to these issues.
Some believe that 20% of children and adolescents in the US have some experience with mental health problems. Often this will occur during the high school years, where social pressures and other stress factors can exaggerate symptoms.
Having said this, psychiatric problems can occur much earlier than that. Some youngster can develop mood disorders as early as 13, behavior disorders by 11 and even anxiety by 6. Add in the extra pressures of school and the risk of substance abuse, and this accelerates.
There are all kinds of triggers for mental health issues. Social standing, through wealth, class, and education, plays a big part here. The same is true for location, sexual orientation, social support systems and other elements of life.
Teenagers are experiencing a turbulent time of self-discovery where all these elements are heavily challenged and disrupted. It is, therefore, no surprise that, so multiple suffer. There is a vicious cycle of the threat of failure, stress, substance abuse, actual failure in class and further stress.
As a result, studies in 2007 showed that 15% of high schools students considered taking their life, with 7% trying. It is also said that the risk of these behaviors is now reaching an all-time high. There is a clear suicide problem here.
Mental Illness And Key Contributing Factors Don’t Go Away Once We Reach Adulthood
When we talk about health-care costs in the US, we tend to think of the usual. This means costs of medical procedures, general insurance, and physical health. While this is costly, the nation spent around $300 billion on mental health in 2002, and the problem is only getting worse. In 2004, we saw a report stating that 25% of adult Americans had a mental disorder of some form.
There is a greater understanding of the issues surrounding psychiatric disorders and psychological instability. The problem is more prevalent than ever. At one time, there was the expectation that 46% of citizens would develop a disorder within their lifetime. Only 17% were then seen as being in the “optimal” state of health in a mental capacity.
This means that there is a clear failure of the system and illness-causing behavioral triggers are still a big problem. Stress and anxiety at home and work are big problems, as are psychological disorders from substance and alcohol abuse.
The mental health issues of class, wealth, race, sexuality and educational standing aren’t necessarily resolved. This can become worse with the pressures of the workplace and new, adult relationship and environments. Alarmingly, around 15% of mothers also reported signs of postpartum depression.
Finally, There Are The Mental Health Risks That Come With Old Age
When we consider the health of our elderly populations, we tend to think of their physical ailments and frailty. We don’t always consider mental illnesses and other psychological effects that come with this illness or the act of growing old. Alzheimer’s is a great example of this.
This is a disease that is prevalent across the world, with more and more research going into prevention, treatment, and care. This is now thought that as many as 13.8 million people in America alone could develop it by 2050. Precise numbers of deaths from dementia are hard to come by.
Dementia and related illnesses can have a profound impact on mental health in the elderly. Social interactions, family support, and housing quality trigger mental health problems. This can then explain why nearly a quarter of those 85 or older have a mental disorder. Seniors, dementia or not, lose loved ones, lose their independence and move out of their homes. The psychological impact of this could go under the radar.