Today is World Mental Health Day! Every year, October 10 is recognized as an opportunity to raise awareness about mental health issues and support those working in this field across the globe. In the United States alone, approximately 61 million people every year experience a mental health illness, and around the world mental illness and substance abuse issues are the primary cause of disability, as stated by the World Health Organization (WHO). Here are a few facts that may just change the way we view mental health disorders and encourage those to seek treatment by letting them know they are not alone:
- According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), mental health issues are more prevalent than cancer, heart disease and diabetes.
- Only 2 in every 5 people experiencing a mood, anxiety or substance abuse seek assistance within a year of the onset of the disorder, according to the WHO.
- NAMI also states approximately 80 percent of people who seek treatment for mental illness show a major reduction in symptoms and improved quality of life.
- Families of all backgrounds are affected regardless of race, religion, gender, education or financial status; mental illness does not discriminate.
- The risk of developing physical illness increases tremendously if mental health issues such as depression and anxiety go untreated.
- The WHO states that depression and anxiety are serious concerns to public health, affecting 1 in 3 people.
- Borderline personality disorder and depression are common lasting effects of sexual abuse and rape, especially in childhood.
- According to the WHO, lifetime occurrence rate of violence against women ranges from 16% to 50%, which may explain why women suffer from depression and emotional distress more frequently.
- Two-thirds of Americans with mental illnesses live productive and successful lives in the community according to NAMI research.
- Seeking treatment for mental and emotional disorders does not mean you are weak. In fact, it means you are incredibly strong.
Both men and women are affected by mental health and substance abuse disorders, but their needs are vastly different. Brookhaven Retreat is an exclusive, women-only residential treatment center that works to address the unique physical, mental and emotional needs of women. Although living with these illnesses may seem overwhelming and hopeless at times, with the right treatment women can create a healthy and fulfilling life.