"As advocates, we find the implications of this message troubling.
“Mental illness” is a big umbrella that covers everything from mild, transient mental health issues to disabling brain disease. To the degree that all of these are homogenized into one giant garden-variety health complaint akin to, say, high blood pressure, policy makers find still another excuse to ignore the treatment needs of those who are most severely ill. After all, if the country is perking along just fine when 20% of its population is mentally ill, what’s the problem!?! (Or … if mental illness is such a widespread problem, there’s no hope in addressing it so why bother?)" To read more click here:
By David Brown,
About 20 percent of American adults suffer some sort of mental illness each year, and about 5 percent experience a serious disorder that disrupts work, family or social life, according to a government report released Thursday.
The annual National Survey on Drug Use and Health sketches a now-familiar picture of a country where mental illness is common and the demand for treatment high.
Mental illness is most prevalent in women, young adults, the unemployed and people with low incomes. Drug and alcohol abuse is more than twice as common in people with mental illness than those without it. About 4 percent of adults contemplate suicide each year.
According to the study, slightly less than half the people with any mental illness — and only 60 percent of those with serious, disabling ones — get treatment each year. Whites and Native Americans are more likely to get treatment than blacks, Hispanics or Asians.
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