Mental Health Statistics

Across the world, mental health statistics show that people are living with and struggling with a variety of conditions. These conditions can affect anyone at any time, and can be treated in many ways.

The WHO estimates that mental health disorders are responsible for around 5 percent of global disease burden in 2017. These disorders also have a large impact on quality of life, and may lead to disability or death.


Mental health is a condition that affects emotion, thinking and behavior. It can be a normal part of life and it is treatable.

Mental illness statistics in the United States show that one in five people suffers from a mental illness at any given time. Almost six in 10 have never sought treatment for their condition.

Prevalence is the number of individuals who have a specific characteristic in a specified period of time, such as a month or year. It can be measured using various methods, including surveys and meta-regression models.

Despite the fact that mental health and substance use disorders are highly prevalent, there is still a substantial treatment gap in many countries, which has been linked to insufficient resources. It has also been attributed to the stigma, social exclusion and discrimination faced by people with these conditions. It is estimated that 80% of the global burden of mental illness and substance use disorders are untreated or undertreated.


Mental illnesses affect people of all ages and backgrounds. Some are mild and only interfere in limited ways with daily life, such as phobias (abnormal fears). Others are serious, so severe that they require care in a hospital.

Many factors – both genetic and environmental – contribute to the onset and severity of mental disorders. But identifying risk and protective factors is rarely easy.

Older adults are particularly at risk for poor mental health and wellbeing. This can be caused by changes in their life conditions – for example, a decline in physical health and economic freedom – as well as social exclusion and loneliness.

Symptoms can include a persistent low mood, feelings of hopelessness or despair, loss of interest or pleasure in activities, sleep problems, and feeling angry or irritable most of the time. Treatment can help improve symptoms and reduce the risk of relapse. Talking to a health professional is an important first step.


About 1 in 5 adults in the United States suffers from a mental health condition at some point in their lives. Among this group, anxiety disorders are the most common, with 42.5 million people suffering from anxiety.

Depression is the second most common mental health issue with 21 million Americans diagnosed with depression, followed by PTSD and bipolar disorder. These diagnoses drive more than one out of eight emergency room visits in the U.S.

Despite high rates of mental illness, many individuals experience difficulty accessing treatment. Nearly half of those surveyed reported cost and insufficient insurance coverage as the primary barriers to seeking help.

The United States is struggling to meet the demands for mental health services, with many states lacking adequate providers and facilities. This is particularly true in rural areas, where access to care is often difficult. The lack of mental health services is a problem for low-income individuals as well. They are less likely to proactively seek specialists they need and to use community centers for care, compared to middle- and high-income Americans.


In the United States, about 1 in 5 adults experiences some type of mental illness. Many mental illnesses occur due to inherited traits, environmental exposures before birth or brain chemistry.

In addition, a number of other factors may increase someone’s risk for developing mental illness including life situations such as unemployment, domestic violence, and family problems. In some cases, mental illnesses are also associated with trauma experienced in childhood and early adolescence.

The consequences of poor mental health are not only severe for individuals with these conditions, but also for families and society. Untreated and poorly treated mental illness imposes significant economic, emotional, and physical burdens. Improving the affordability of mental health treatment, expanding access to behavioral health providers, and removing barriers to care can reduce these burdens and help people who struggle with their mental health.