May is Mental Health Awareness Month
Millions of people are affected by mental illness each year. While 1 in 5 people will experience a mental illness during their lifetime, everyone faces challenges in life that can impact their mental health. Recognizing the increasing number of people affected by mental illness over the past few years as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the National Alliance on Mental Illness (“NAMI”) will amplify the message of “Together for Mental Health” for 2022’s Mental Health Awareness Month.
Mental Health Awareness Month has been observed in the United States since 1949. During May, there is a national movement to raise awareness about mental health. NAMI along with other mental health advocates constantly fight stigma, provide support, educate the public, and advocate for policies that support people with mental illness and their families. Mental Health Awareness Month provides an opportunity to shine a spotlight on spreading helpful mental health resources, and information and allow people to share their stories.
Mental illness is a real and treatable set of conditions that includes major depression, bipolar disorder, eating disorders, panic attacks, generalized anxiety disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and schizophrenia, among dozens of others. These disorders are serious enough to significantly impact a person’s daily life functioning, whether at school, work, or in their relationships with others. Mental health issues often coincide with a unique set of challenges that make it difficult for people to access even the most necessities, such as food, medications, stable housing, and healthcare.
Despite the large number of Americans affected by such disorders, the stigma surrounding mental illness is a major barrier that prevents people from seeking the mental health treatment that they need. Another huge barrier that prevents people from receiving the mental health treatment that they need are insurance companies.
Why We Need Increased Access to Care:
- 1 in 5 U.S. adults experience mental illness each year, and less than half of them receive treatment.
- 1 in 20 U.S. adults experience a serious mental illness each year, and less than two-thirds of them receive treatment.
- 1 in 6 U.S. youth experience a mental health condition each year, and only half of them receive treatment.
- 50% of all lifetime mental illness begins by age 14, and 75% by age 24.
- The average delay between onset of mental illness symptoms and treatment is 11 years.
- 55% of U.S. counties do not have a single practicing psychiatrist.
- 1 in 5 young people report that the pandemic had a significant negative impact on their mental health.
- 1 in 10 young people under age 18 experience a mental health condition following a COVID-19 diagnosis.
- In 2020, there was a 31% increase in mental health-related emergency department visits among U.S. adolescents.
- Three-quarters of Americans (75%) say they are not content with the state of mental health treatment in this country. That is particularly true if they are diagnosed with a mental health condition (84%).
- 60% of Americans are concerned about the stigma around mental illness.
- Less than half (49%) of Americans consider themselves familiar with the U.S. mental health care system.
- Source: Data from CDC, NIMH, and other select sources. Find citations at nami.org/mhstats
At Kantor & Kantor we work to put an end to the stigma surrounding mental illness and we advocate for treatment and recovery. We are willing to stand up to the insurance companies when they deny treatment and we understand that living with a mental illness is different for everyone.
If you or someone you know is suffering from a mental illness and you are being denied benefits by your insurer, please call Kantor & Kantor for a free consultation at 877-640-6576 or use our online contact form. We understand, and we can help.