Did you know, according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (2013), that 1 out of every 4 adults in America experiences some form of mental illness in a given year? That’s approximately 61.5 million people! Then, the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) mentions that approximately 13.6 million Americans, which is around 1 out of every 17 people, specifically deal with serious mental illnesses like schizophrenia, major depression, or bipolar disorder. Although these statistics are three years old and display a small group of people, they show us that mental health issues are much more common than many people wish to realize.
Within our society, mental health issues were not as fully known about or not as commonly diagnosed over 20 years ago. However, as more research and studies were conducted, mental health issues gradually started coming more to the forefront and slightly more known. Although people have been diagnosed with a variety of different mental health issues, it’s clear that many within our society don’t want to acknowledge there are mental health issues that occur or don’t want to educate themselves about mental health issues. There’s also the issue of not having access to the support or information needed to decrease or resolve the significance level of the mental health issues. In speaking with people within the medical field, I was told that the area of mental health was one of the lowest funded medical areas and one of the least understood.
However, despite all of this, mental health affects all areas of a person’s life. The three significant areas include emotional, psychological, and social well-being. If any of those areas are negatively impacted or a person has significant difficulties in one or more of those areas, chances are the difficulties from one area will seep into the other areas. When those areas begin affecting each other, behaviors manifest themselves, and people (those closest to the individual) begin noticing changes in that person. If an individual or those who are closest to him or her don’t acknowledge the issue and reach out for assistance, the behaviors may get to the point where they spiral out of control. Although dealing with mental health issues is very private for many people, it’s also important for those who don’t struggle to understand what really goes on with a person.
More will be shared at a later time. Meanwhile, to learn more on mental health, visit www.nami.org.