THE EXPERIENCE OF MENTAL ILLNESS

ATTITUDES TOWARD MENTAL ILLNESS

SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC COSTS

DEFINING MENTAL ILLNESS

PREVALENCE - United States and Worldwide

Among Children and Adolescents
Among the Elderly
Among the Poor and Among Men and Women
Changing Rates of Mental Illness

KINDS OF MENTAL ILLNESSES

Anxiety Disorders and Mood Disorders
Schizophrenia and Other Psychotic Disorders
Personality and Cognitive Disorders
Dissociative, Somatoform and Factitious Disorders
Substance-Related, Eating and Impulse-Control Disorders

CAUSES OF MENTAL ILLNESS

Biological Perspective
Psychodynamic, Humanistic and Existential Perspectives
Behavioral, Cognitive and Sociocultural Perspective

DIAGNOSIS

TREATMENT

Drug Therapy
Individual Psychotherapy
Group and Family Therapies
Electroconvulsive Therapy and Psychosurgery
Treatment Settings
Treatment in Non-Western Countries


HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVES OF MENTAL ILLNESS



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Mental Illness





Among the Poor

Like physical diseases, the highest rates of mental illness occur among people in the lower socioeconomic classes, especially those living in severe poverty. Rates of almost all mental illnesses decline as levels of income and education increase. A national survey published in 1994 indicated that people who earned $19,000 or less annually in the United States were twice as likely to have experienced an anxiety disorder as people who earned $70,000 or more. The hardships associated with poverty seem to contribute to the development of some mental illnesses, particularly anxiety disorders and depression. In addition, debilitating mental illnesses, such as schizophrenia, may cause individuals to drift to lower socioeconomic classes. (Among the Poor, Among Men and Women, Mental Illness)

Among Men and Women

Generally, the overall prevalence rates of mental illnesses among men and women are similar. However, men have much higher rates of antisocial personality disorder and substance abuse. In the United States, women suffer from depression and anxiety disorders at about twice the rate of men. The gender gap is even wider in some countries. For example, in China, women suffer from depression at nine times the rate of men. (Among the Poor, Among Men and Women, Mental Illness)

Among the Poor | Among Men and Women | Mental Illness