Friday, July 12, 2024

What Percentage Of Americans Are Depressed

So When Is It Time To Ask For Help

Why Election Depression Has Affected Many Americans | TODAY

Schiller said if your emotions are getting in the way of enjoying time with your loved ones or getting through the day, it may be time to look for help.

Or youre able to do it but its much much harder than before and youre really having to pull yourself up by the bootstraps to get through each day, thats a sign that its time to reach out, Schiller said.

Depression In Older Adults: More Facts

Depression affects more than 19 million Americans every year, regardless of age, race, or gender. While depression is not a normal part of the aging process, there is a strong likelihood of it occurring when other physical health conditions are present. For example, nearly a quarter of the 600,000 people who experience a stroke in a given year will experience clinical depression. Unfortunately, symptoms of depression are often overlooked and untreated when they coincide with other medical illnesses or life events that commonly occur as people age . However, clinical depression is never a normal response it is a serious medical illness that should be treated at any age.


  • More than two million of the 34 million Americans age 65 and older suffer from some form of depression.

Co-occurring Illnesses

  • Symptoms of clinical depression can be triggered by other chronic illnesses common in later life, such as Alzheimers disease, Parkinsons disease, heart disease, cancer and arthritis.


  • One-third of widows/widowers meet criteria for depression in the first month after the death of their spouse, and half of these individuals remain clinically depressed after one year.

Healthcare Costs

  • Older patients with symptoms of depression have roughly 50% higher healthcare costs than non-depressed seniors.



Rates In Children And Adolescents

Depression can begin during childhood or during the teenage years. Similar to the prevalence rates in adults, girls are more likely to experience depression than boys. Theres a sharp increase in depression in girls just after puberty.

Although there has been a rise in teenage depression, according to a 2016 American Academy of Pediatrics study, there has not been a corresponding increase in treatment for teenagers.

The American Academy of Pediatrics now recommends regular depression screening for all adolescents 12 and over, given that the symptoms of depression are often missed by adults such as parents, teachers, and even doctors.

Here are the most recent depression statistics in children and adolescents:

  • 3.1 million young people between the ages of 12 and 17 have experienced at least one major depressive episode in the past year in the United States.
  • 2% to 3% of children ages 6 to 12 may have serious depression.
  • 20% of adolescent girls have experienced a major depressive episode.
  • 6.8% of adolescent boys have experienced a major depressive episode.
  • 71% of adolescents who experienced a major depressive episode in the past year experienced a severe impairment.
  • 60% of children and adolescents with depression are not getting any type of treatment.
  • 19% of children with depression saw a health care professional for treatment.

Don’t Miss: Va Rating For Major Depressive Disorder Recurrent Moderate

In 10 Americans Depressed

In time for National Depression Screening Day and Mental Illness Awareness Week , the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published survey data on depressed mood in the United States.

The report summarizes responses to a standardized questionnaire administered in 2006 and 2008. The researchers asked 235,067 adults about symptoms during the 2 weeks prior to receiving the call.

On average, 9% percent of respondents met the criteria for some type of depression. About one-third of those with depression had Major Depression, a relatively severe form. Regional variations were broad the rate of depression in Mississippi was almost 15%, while the rate in North Dakota came in under 5%. The authors suggested that these differences might be explained by socioeconomic factors or variations in access to mental health care.

Broad population surveys are interesting and useful the CDC report reflects an enormous amount of work. Still, the results are inevitably difficult to interpret. Its worth following the link to read the details. Be sure to scroll down to the editorial note, where the authors describe some limitations of the survey. For example, telephone surveys dont necessarily reach people who use mobile phones rather than landlines. And the survey also doesnt capture people who are either homeless or living in institutions.

An Epidemic Of Teen Depression


The report found that diagnoses of major depression are rising fastest among those under age 35. As a result, diagnoses have gone up 47 percent since 2013 among millennials .

Plus, the rate for adolescents has risen 63 percent since 201347 percent for boys and 65 percent for girls. Therefore, teen depression rates are increasing.

According to the report, these quickly rising rates of diagnosed major depression in younger age groups can have broader implications on future healthcare needs as they grow into later adulthood. Therefore, as the report states, effective diagnosis and management of major depression is crucial in these early years. Furthermore, treatment is the most important influence on an adolescents future health and wellness.

Also Check: Why Is It Hard To Shower When Depressed

During 20132016 81% Of Americans Aged 20 And Over Had Depression In A Given 2

  • Overall, women were almost twice as likely to have depression as men . This pattern also was observed among each age group .
  • Among both men and women, the percentage with depression did not differ statistically across age groups.

Figure 1. Percentage of persons aged 20 and over with depression, by age and sex: United States, 20132016

1Significantly different from females in same age group.NOTES: Depression was defined as a score greater than or equal to 10 on the Patient Health Questionnaire. Access data table for Figure 1pdf icon.SOURCE: NCHS, National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 20132016.

Major Depression Among The States

Estimates for major depression ranged from 1.5% in North Dakota to 5.3% in Mississippi and West Virginia.

The CDC says it is not known why depression is greater in women than in men. And differences in depression prevalence among states and territories might result from variations in socioeconomic status, physical disorders, and access to health care treatment.

The investigators said a greater prevalence of depression was found in the Southeastern states.

Here is a list of participating states and territories and their prevalence rates for major depression.

Area Percentage of Major Depression

Alabama 4.1

Read Also: What Causes Depression And Anxiety In Teens

How The United States Compares

The World Health Organization reports that nearly 800,000 people die worldwide each year from suicide, which is about one person every 40 seconds. Globally, it is the second leading cause of death for those between the ages of 15 and 24.

A 2019 report published in The BMJ found that the global suicide rate has dropped by almost a third since 1990. The study found that while the actual number of suicides increased during this time, the suicide rate dropped from 16.6 deaths per 100,000 in 1990 to 11.2 deaths per 100,000 in 2016.

These global declines in suicide deaths are largely attributed to drops in the suicide rates in China and India. Other countries including the United States, Zimbabwe, Jamaica, and Belize all experienced significant increases in suicides over the same time period.

The Prevalence Of Depression Among Adults Decreased As Family Income Levels Increased

Depression and anxiety increases during pandemic
  • Overall, 15.8% of adults from families living below the federal poverty level had depression. The prevalence of depression decreased to 3.5% among adults at or above 400% of the FPL .
  • Among both men and women, the prevalence of depression decreased with increasing levels of family income.
  • Men with family incomes at or above 400% of the FPL had the lowest prevalence of depression , while women with family incomes below the FPL had the highest prevalence .

Figure 3. Percentage of persons aged 20 and over with depression, by family income level: United States, 20132016

1Significant decreasing linear trend.2Significantly lower than women in same family income level.NOTES: Family income levels are defined by the federal poverty level . Depression was defined as a score greater than or equal to 10 on the Patient Health Questionnaire. Access data table for Figure 3pdf icon.SOURCE: NCHS, National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 20132016.

Don’t Miss: Does High Blood Sugar Cause Depression

Depression Rates In Us Tripled When The Pandemic First Hitnow Theyre Even Worse

Public health researchers say biggest depression risks for American adults include having low income, being unmarried

Depression among adults in the United States tripled in the early 2020 months of the global coronavirus pandemicjumping from 8.5 percent before the pandemic to a staggering 27.8 percent. New research from Boston University School of Public Health reveals that the elevated rate of depression has persisted into 2021, and even worsened, climbing to 32.8 percent and affecting 1 in every 3 American adults.

The study is the first nationally representative study in the US that examines the change in depression prevalence before and then during the pandemic. Published in the journal The Lancet Regional HealthAmericas, the study found that the most significant predictors for if a person experienced depressive symptoms during the pandemic were low household income, not being married, and experiencing multiple pandemic-related stressors. The findings underscore the inextricable link between the pandemic and the short- and long-term impact it will have on mental health in the US and beyond.

Although population-level stressors decreased overall during the first year of the pandemic, people experiencing four or more stressors were more likely to also experience elevated depressive symptomsand least likely to overcome those stressors.

Adapted from a story originally published

Statistics Related To Mental Health Disorders

The following are the latest statistics available from the National Institute of Mental Health Disorders, part of the National Institutes of Health:

  • Mental health disorders account for several of the top causes of disability in established market economies, such as the U.S., worldwide, and include: major depression , manic depression , schizophrenia, and obsessive-compulsive disorder.

  • An estimated 26% of Americans ages 18 and older — about 1 in 4 adults — suffers from a diagnosable mental disorder in a given year.

  • Many people suffer from more than one mental disorder at a given time. In particular, depressive illnesses tend to co-occur with substance abuse and anxiety disorders.

  • Approximately 9.5% of American adults ages 18 and over, will suffer from a depressive illness each year.

  • Women are nearly twice as likely to suffer from major depression than men. However, men and women are equally likely to develop bipolar disorder.
  • While major depression can develop at any age, the average age at onset is the mid-20s.
  • With bipolar disorder, which affects approximately 2.6% of Americans age 18 and older in a given year — the average age at onset for a first manic episode is during the early 20s.
  • Most people who commit suicide have a diagnosable mental disorder — most commonly a depressive disorder or a substance abuse disorder.

  • Four times as many men than women commit suicide. However, women attempt suicide more often than men.
  • Recommended Reading: Guided Meditation For Depression And Loneliness

    Suicide Rate Statistic Breakdowns

    When the suicide rate is broken down by demographics, important information can be observed. For example:

    • The suicide rate is four times higher for males than females. In the United States, male deaths make up almost 80% of all suicide deaths.
    • Suicide is attempted three times as often by females women are also more likely to have suicidal thoughts.
    • Firearms are the most common cause of death for males.
    • Poisoning is the most common cause of death for females.
    • Lesbian, gay, and bisexual kids are three times more likely to attempt suicide than heterosexual kids.
    • 41% of trans adults attempt suicide.
    • The suicide rate is 1.8 times higher in rural areas than in urban areas.
    • The suicide rate is highest among middle-aged white males. A 2015 study in the Proceedings of the Natural Sciences found that the suicide rate among white, middle-aged American men has increased dramatically in recent years.
    • Among Native Americans and Alaska Natives, suicide is the eighth leading cause of death across all ages. For the age group 15 to 34 of Native Americans and Alaska Natives, suicide jumps to the second leading cause of death.

    Suicide statistics by age group have been consistent for several years. Broken down by age group across all racial and ethnic groups, suicide as a leading cause of death ranked as follows:

    Age Group
    65 and older 17th

    Depression And The Elderly

    • 7 million adults aged 65 years and older are affected by depression.
    • More than 1 in 6 Americans working full-time or part-time report assisting with the care of an elderly or disabled family member, relative, or friend. A survey of these adult caregivers found that 40% to 70% of them have clinically significant symptoms of depression.

    Recommended Reading: What Is The Purpose Of Depression

    How Many In Us Are Depressed

    CDC Says 9% of Adults Are Depressed at Least Occasionally 3.4% Suffer From Major Depression

    Sept. 30, 2010 — The CDC says that about 9% of Americans report they are depressed at least occasionally, and 3.4% suffer from major depression.

    The 9% are people who reported to surveyors that they felt depressed to some degree in the two weeks prior to being questioned. That includes the 3.4% of adults who meet the CDCâs criteria for major depression.

    The analysis, part of the CDCâs Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report for Oct. 1, was based on a survey of 235,067 people aged 18 and older in 45 states, Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands.

    According to the MMWR, estimates for current depression in states and territories in 2006-2008 ranged from a low of 4.8% in North Dakota to 14.8% in Mississippi. People in Kentucky, New Jersey, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and South Dakota did not participate in either the 2006 or the 2008 survey.

    Almost 8 Percent Of Americans Are Moderately To Severely Depressed

    An estimated 7.6 percent of Americans ages 12 and up are moderately to severely depressed, according to a new study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention . Of those with severe symptoms, only 35 percent reported having contact with a mental health professional in the past year.

    Not enough people are getting appropriate treatment for depression, lead author Laura Pratt, with the CDCs National Center for Health Statistics, told HealthDay. People with severe depression should be getting psychotherapy. Some might need complicated medication regimens, which psychiatrists are better equipped to do, which makes it even more concerning that only 35 percent of people with severe depression have seen a mental health professional.

    About 3 percent of Americans had symptoms of severe depression between 2009 and 2012, the study found. Just over 3 percent of black people reported severe depression, compared with 2.6 percent of white people.

    Females had higher rates of depression than males in every age group. The highest rate of depression, 12.3 percent, was found in women ages 4059. People living below the poverty level were nearly 2.5 times more likely to have depression than those at or above the poverty level. Almost 43 percent of people with severe depressive symptoms reported serious difficulties in work, home, and social activities.

    Contact our helpline

    Recommended Reading: Waking Up Sad And Depressed

    Data Sources And Methods

    Data from the NHANES 20072016 were used for these analyses. Data from two combined cycles were used to test differences between subgroups. Trends in depression prevalence reflect a 10-year period of five 2-year NHANES survey cycles, 20072016.

    NHANES is a cross-sectional survey designed to monitor the health and nutritional status of the noninstitutionalized civilian U.S. population . The survey consists of home interviews and standardized physical examinations in mobile examination centers . The PHQ-9 was administered by trained interviewers during a private interview in the MEC. Approximately 89% of MEC-examined adults completed the PHQ-9.

    The NHANES sample is selected through a complex, multistage probability design. During 20072016, non-Hispanic black, non-Hispanic Asian, and Hispanic persons, among other groups, were oversampled to obtain reliable estimates for these population subgroups. Race and Hispanic origin-specific estimates reflect individuals reporting only one race. Persons reporting another race or multiple races are included in the total but are not reported separately.

    Examination sample weights, which account for the differential probabilities of selection, nonresponse, and noncoverage, were incorporated into the estimation process. The standard errors of the percentages were estimated using Taylor series linearization , a method that incorporates the sample weights and sample design.

    What Were The Causes Of The Great Depression

    People suffering from depression not getting the help they need

    Four factors played roles of varying importance. The stock market crash of 1929 shattered confidence in the American economy, resulting in sharp reductions in spending and investment. Banking panics in the early 1930s caused many banks to fail, decreasing the pool of money available for loans. The gold standard required foreign central banks to raise interest rates to counteract trade imbalances with the United States, depressing spending and investment in those countries. The Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act imposed steep tariffs on many industrial and agricultural goods, inviting retaliatory measures that ultimately reduced output and caused global trade to contract.

    Great Depression, worldwide economic downturn that began in 1929 and lasted until about 1939. It was the longest and most severe depression ever experienced by the industrialized Western world, sparking fundamental changes in economic institutions, macroeconomic policy, and economic theory. Although it originated in the United States, the Great Depression caused drastic declines in output, severe unemployment, and acute deflation in almost every country of the world. Its social and cultural effects were no less staggering, especially in the United States, where the Great Depression represented the harshest adversity faced by Americans since the Civil War.

    Recommended Reading: Anxiety And Depression Medication List

    Popular Articles
    Related news