Mental Health Awareness Week: Two-thirds of British adults experience mental illnesses, says survey

Two-thirds or 65 percent of adults in the United Kingdom have experienced a mental disorder at some point in their lives, a new survey has revealed. According to the study by the Mental Health Foundation (MHF), a U.K. charity, the mental health problem is getting worse with the population in the age group of 18-54 years more likely to experience a psychiatric disorder.

The survey that involved more than 2,000 individuals was launched to mark the beginning of the Mental Health Awareness Week in the U.K. “Our report lays out the sheer scale of the problem. This isn’t an issue that just affects a minority. At some point in our life most of us are likely to experience a mental health problem,” said Jenny Edwards, chief executive of MHF. He said that with only a few affected having access to professional treatment and care, there was a need to redouble efforts to prevent development of mental health problems.

As per the survey, 42 percent of people reported experiencing depression with a quarter having a panic attack. Compared to 59 percent of people in the highest household income bracket, the study found that nearly three quarters living in the lowest bracket experienced a mental health problem. Also, 85 percent of unemployed people experienced a mental health problem.

The study revealed that people aged 55 years and above took more steps to improve their overall mental health and well-being. Some of these steps included eating healthy, getting enough sleep and spending time with family and friends. The survey also pointed out that only 13 percent of Britons were discovered to have a positive mental health with women more likely to experience a psychiatric problem.

The MHF has called for a Royal Commission to examine solutions to preventing mental health disorders with a focus on reducing the risk. As part of its efforts, the foundation has also called for incorporating mental health screening into existing health screening programs and increased funding for mental health research with focus on prevention.

Mental health issues in US

While there has been an increase in the number of young people experiencing anxiety and depression symptoms in the U.K., each passing day has seen a parallel rise among Americans grappling with a psychiatric disorder. In fact, the U.S. is in the throes of mental health crisis. According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), in 2015, there were over 43 million people aged 18 years or older in the country – representing about 18 percent of all adult population – with any mental illness (AMI) within the previous year.

A major cause of concern is that while there has been an increase in number of people suffering from mental illnesses across the U.S., the nation has witnessed a decline in access to mental health services. A recent study has revealed that people with psychiatric conditions in the U.S. are finding it increasingly difficult to get access to professional mental health care services.

As per study’s lead author Judith Weissman, the research suggests that Americans with mental health conditions face more hurdles when trying to access adequate treatment for their disorders. Weissman said that basis the study data, millions of Americans have a level of emotional functioning leading to lower life quality and lower life expectancy.

Mental disorders can be treated with timely medical intervention. If you know someone suffering from any kind of mental health disorder, contact the 24/7 Mental Health Helpline to find one of the finest mental health facilities near you. Call at our 24/7 helpline number 855-653-8178 or chat online with our representatives to know about the best mental health programs specific to your needs.