Mental health problems are a growing public health concern. Any one of us could develop mental health problems, no matter how old we are, whether we are male or female, rich or poor, and regardless of our ethnic, religious or cultural group.
Your mental health affects your daily life, relationships, and physical health. It also affects your ability to enjoy life and to attain a balance between normal life activities and the effort required to achieve psychological resilience.
- Globally, more than 300 million people of all ages suffer from Depression.
- According to the 2013 Global Burden of Disease study, the predominant mental health problem worldwide is Depression, followed by Anxiety, Schizophrenia and Bipolar disorder.
- WHO declare that Depression is now the leading cause of disability worldwide, behind lower back pain.
- Depressive disorders also contribute to the burden of suicide and heart disease on mortality and disability; they have both a direct and an indirect impact on the length and quality of life.
United Kingdom Statistics
The Adult Psychiatric Morbidity Survey (APMS), which has been carried out every seven years since 1993, offers some of the most reliable data for the trends and prevalence of many different mental health problems and treatments. The survey carried out in 2014 and published in 2016 is the source of many of the prevalence figures cited below:
- One in six (17%) of people over the age of 16 had a common mental health problem in the week prior to being interviewed. This is an increase from the 2007 survey, which found that 16.2% had a common mental health problem in the past week.
- Nearly half (43.4%) of adults think that they have had a diagnosable mental health condition at some point in their life (35.2% of men and 51.2% of women). A fifth of men (19.5%) and a third of women (33.7%) have had diagnoses confirmed by professionals.
- A third of people (36.2%) who self-identified as having a mental health problem in the 2014 APMS have never been diagnosed by a professional.
- In 2014, 19.7% of people in the UK aged 16 and older showed symptoms of Anxiety or Depression – a 1.5% increase from 2013. This percentage was higher among females (22.5%) than males (16.8%).
- The APMS (2014) reports that, in England, the rates of common mental health problems are highest in the South West (20.9%), North West (19%), West Midlands (18.4%) and London (18%). They are lowest in the South East (13.6%) and the East (14.4%).
- According to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), common mental health problems include Depression, GAD, Social Anxiety disorder, Panic Disorder, OCD, and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).