Mental health statistics

Over the course of a year, one in four people will suffer a mental health problem, but what does that really mean? What are the common conditions? What are the risk factors? How long do they normally last? What are the regional, sex or age statistics?

Well here we have an overview of the most common mental health disorder statistics. These facts and figures give fascinating insight into the prevalence of mental health problems and the associated social and economic cost.

What we at Mental Healthy would like to point out though, is that statistics do not show the human beings behind the numbers, our sister article to this, entitled Mental Health Facts, gives a more rounded picture of the facts behind the statistics.

Mental health statistics overview

  • Over the course of a year, one in four people will suffer a mental health problem
  • This equates to just over one in six people experiencing a mental health problem at any one time. Mild to moderate mental illness makes up the majority of this statistic, with 0.4% of the population experiencing a psychotic disorder
  • One in 10 children suffer a mental health problem
  • As of 2001, it was estimated that around 450 million people in the world have a diagnosable mental health condition.  (WHO 2001)
  • 50% of all lifetime mental illness starts by the age of 14
  • One in five over 60’s living in the community will experience depression
  • Two in five over 60’s living in a care home setting will experience depression
  • Women are more likely to seek help for a mental health problem
  • Men are three times more likely to commit suicide than women in the UK
  • Anxiety and depression (mixed) is the most prevalent mental health disorder in the UK
  • 400 per 100,000 of the UK population will self-harm, this is a shockingly high statistic and one of the highest in Europe
  • Around 50% of people with common mental health conditions are no longer affected after 18 months
  • Poorer people, the unemployed and the long-term sick are more likely to be still affected after 18 months than the general population
  • Between 8% and 12% of the population experience depression in any year
  • Overall, common mental health problems peak in middle age and gradually get better after this with 70 -74 year olds faring best with the least common prevalence of neurotic disorders
  • The suicide rate in the EU is 17.5 people in 100,000 and 15.1 in 100,000 worldwide
  • When we carried out our own survey in 2010 we found that of the UK population, only 46% would say they are very mentally healthy.

The financial and economic costs of mental illness

  • Mental illness and it’s direct cost to England alone is £41.8 billion per annum
  • Wider costs to in terms of the economy, benefits, lost productivity at work, amount to £77 billion per year
  • Mental illness represents the single largest cause of disability
  • NHS, and care costs £22.5 billion per year in England alone as of 2007
  • Costs of NHS and care are expected to to £32.6 billion by 2026 a jump of 45% (£9billion of this is due to treatment and care of dementia)
  • Of the  £102 billion the government spends on the NHS in England each year, only 13.8% of this budget goes towards mental health
  • Long-term and severe mental illness sufferers who have been given intensive support to return to employment experience fewer and shorter subsequent hospital stays than people receiving usual mental health services, showing a fantastic case for more paths into employment and supported work being funded

Regional Statistics

  • When we carried out our UK regional report in 2010, we fund that:
  • The East Midlands is the happiest place to live in the UK
  • Wales, Northern Ireland, West Midlands and London fared worst
  • When asked to rate their mental health, only 44% of Londoners judge themselves as being ‘very mentally healthy’. London also has the highest national percentage of those who claim to be very mentally unhealthy.
  • A staggering 39% of Londoners admit to drinking to ease stress, depression, low mood or anxiety.
  • London once again fared badly in regard to the amount of people who rate themselves as ‘very mentally unhealthy’ 8% of the population scoring themselves as such

Mental Health and alcohol

  • 8% of the UK population admit that they do use alcohol to deal with these mental wellbeing issues on a regular basis
  • While a large number, 34% of the population, agree that they use alcohol for this purpose at least occasionally
  • This equates to 37% of men and 30% of women likely to use alcohol to cope with low mood, or anxiety.
  • Londoners and Northern Ireland fared worst with 14% and 13% consecutively agreeing strongly that they regularly use alcohol for this purpose.
  • In total 39% of Londoners and a whopping 47% of the population in Northern Ireland scored 3 or higher out of 5, indicating that they agree they do use alcohol for this purpose at least on occasion.

These statistics are taken from The Mental Health foundation website, The National mental Health development Unit Factfile 3, and the Uncovered report published in issue 2 of uncovered magazine.

Your rating: None Average: 5.8 (4 votes)