Depression statistics are hard, concrete evidence that show just how much individuals are lacking in being adequately treated for their mental health issues. With depression left untreated, suicide is warned as a severe consequence and pressed on others to look out for. When it comes to the disease of addiction, depression is commonly intertwined due to either previously having existed in the addict’s history or developing sporadically after the drugs are no longer presently in their system to numb every thought and emotion. Some addict’s have enough tools and skills to know that self-knowledge alone will fail them because their depression is a disease just as severe as their addiction and cannot go untreated either. However, others are such unfortunates that are not aware they should be seeking treatment or rather simply choose not to because of the stigma on mental illness.
A study found that 26.2% of American adults battle with a some kind of mental disease. This equates to an approximate 57.7 million people. Out of this, 8.9 million are struggling to go about their day while battling both that mental illness in addition to a substance use disorder. All the while, a mere 7.4% of them actually partake in some form of treatment to relieve symptoms of the distressing conditions of which they suffer. Depression statistics shows that the disease affects up to 25% of all women while it only latches onto up to 12% of men. For such a great amount of people in the world to be recorded as dealing with such a challenging ailment, the small number of people who actually do seek help is saddening. Not to mention, nearly half the amount of sufferers are dealing with more than one mental illness. Why aren’t more people jumping at the opportunity to get and feel better? It is stated that if the sufferers get the treatment they need for their depression, then at least 80% of them will notice improvement in just a matter of weeks. Though there are many reasons that could attribute as to why, including feeling hopeless when recovery is concerned, lack of insurance, financial insecurity leading to no money to cover the cost of treatments or medication, and so on. Still, however, the bigger issue remains above all: the stigma on mental illness and as mentioned before addiction as well because the two are often closely correlated.
Temporary Solution to Self-Medicate
The stigma behind addiction needs to be stopped. It is not a moral muddle of choice but rather an actual diagnosed brain disease. There are 23 million people stated as in need of treatment for addiction, but only the portion of 3 million reach out for it. When these addicts do come into recovery, many have a similar story claiming that they began using drugs to self-medicate their feelings of unease, anxiety, and honest utter depression. These individuals never set out to become addicted but were rather trying to be on the same wave-length as a non-chemically imbalanced person. They were trying to control their emotions by playing doctor themselves but their self-knowledge failed when they could not control their emotions after all, the amount of the drugs they used, or manage their lives in any, way, shape, and form as a result of the symptom of using the drugs. It’s unfortunate that the stigma is held against mental illnesses to the point where people feel that their disease isn’t real, justifiable, or lacking reason to explain why they feel how they feel. When people are able to look at addicts and mentally ill individuals as people that are sick with a disease, then the stigma should drop and hopefully it will encourage them to seek help for their disease.
Depression statistics are clearly illustrating that people that are in need of treatment are not receiving it because of the stigma centered on mental health. Breaking the stigma behind this and addiction will help these sick and suffering individuals get the treatment they need. Other physical diseases can be talked about without the sufferer being blamed or looked down upon for having it, so why should a mental illness and addiction be any different? Why can’t a person say the words “mental illness” or “addiction” on their porch without their neighbor making a judgmental face, cringing in terror? A mental illness, substance use disorder, and addiction could happen to anybody. These are illnesses that do not discriminate.
If you or someone you know is suffering from a substance use disorder or addiction, call The Watershed for help today at 1-800-861-1768.Tags: Addiction, Depression, mental illness