Depression is a major concern for people across the country. For women depression is more than a concern, it is a disease that impacts 25% of us. This means if you are in a room with your mother and two sisters, at least one of you could be diagnosed as depressed. These numbers are staggering and should cause significant alarm within the female population. The majority of the 45 million people suffering from mental illness every year are women.
Studies have been conducted to document this phenomenon. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) interviewed over 65,000 Americans over the age of 12 to analyze depression and mental illness. They found that 23% of women in American suffered from mental illness during the year. Only 15% of men did. Additionally women suffering from depression had a higher likelihood of substance abuse and dependence issues.
There are many factors that can contribute to why women suffer more from mental illness. Hormones and pregnancy are definitely a contributing factor. Many women suffer from depression after giving birth. Doctors are not sure the exact reason or how to prevent it. Many women have found relief during and after pregnancy by taking Omega 3 fish oil. Women that have suffered for years have found relief with this natural remedy.
Studies show that most people with depression are not getting the help that they need. Only four out of ten adults that have some form of mental illness were treated for it last year. This contributes in part to the high number of suicides and suicide attempts in our country. In 2011 8.5 million American adults considered suicide and 1.1 million completed it. Treating depression when it starts can help to prevent such high suicide rates.
Women should take not of this epidemic impacting the female population and look for ways to battle it, just like they have fought breast cancer. It begins by talking about it. Many people are ashamed to admit that they are depressed and avoid discussing it. Watch for changed in your friends and relatives with mood swings, increased drinking, rapid weight loss or gain, disinterest in life, and a general down mood. If you see these signs talk to your friend, be a good listening ear, and if they are depressed help them to find help so they can beat the disease before it beats them.