One in Five US Adults Afflicted with Mental Illness
Mental illness among adults aged 18 or older is defined as having had a diagnosable mental, behavioral, or emotional disorder (excluding developmental and substance use disorders) in the past year, based on criteria specified in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV). The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) National Survey on Drug Use and Health reveals that 45.9 million American adults ages 18 and older, or 20% of this age group, experienced mental illness in the past year. The rate of mental illness was more than twice as high among those aged 18 to 25 (29.%) than among those aged 50 and older (14.3%). Adult women were also more likely than men to have experienced mental illness in the past year (23% versus 16.8%). The report also shows that in 2010, 11.4 million adults (5% of the adult population) suffered from serious mental illness – a condition that resulted in serious functional impairment, which substantially interfered with or limited one or more major life activities.
“2010 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH).” Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA), 2011.