Yesterday, we reported on the surprisingly low percentage of drug and alcohol use in Missouri, based on the latest state-by-state data released each year by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
Today we'll use that same report to to illuminate an area in which Missouri is a leader: mental illness.
Among the thirteen mental-health categories measured in the study, Missouri ranked significantly higher than average in nine of them.
In three categories, Missouri was near the very top of the list:
The findings are based on the National Survey on Drug Use and Health from 2008 and 2009 for adults aged 18 or older. (Estimates of depression among youths aged 12 to 17 also are included.)
Missouri also ranked high in the following categories:
That said, the report suggests that Missourians don't seem to have as many serious thoughts about suicide as people in other states.
Other national findings highlighted by the authors of the report:
- 4.6 percent of adults aged 18 or older had serious mental illness in the past year. Rhode Island had the highest rate (7.2 percent), while Hawaii and South Dakota shared the lowest rate (3.5 percent).
- The national rate of past year "any" mental illness among adults aged 18 or older was 19.7 percent. The highest rate occurred in Rhode Island (24.2 percent), while the lowest rate was in Maryland (16.7 percent). Across age groups, the highest rate of past year any mental illness was among 18 to 25 year olds (30.5 percent nationally).
- 3.7 percent of adults aged 18 or older in the United States had serious thoughts of suicide in the past year. State-level estimates ranged from 2.8 percent in Georgia to 5.4 percent in Utah. The District of Columbia was the only State with a rate in the lowest fifth among 18 to 25 year olds and in the highest fifth among persons aged 26 or older.
- 6.5 percent of adults aged 18 or older had a major depressive episode (i.e., depression) in the past year. This rate was unchanged from 2007-2008 (6.6 percent). Estimates at the State level ranged from 5.2 percent in Pennsylvania to 9.5 percent in Rhode Island. In addition, 8.2 percent of youths aged 12 to 17 experienced depression nationwide during the past year. These rates ranged from 6.8 percent in the District of Columbia and Pennsylvania to 10.3 percent in Oregon.
Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of St. Louis and beyond.
Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.
Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep St. Louis' true free press free.