Mental Illness is More “Normal” than You Think

Did you Know?

  • 1 in 5 U.S. adults experience mental illness each year
  • 1 in 20 U.S. adults experience serious mental illness each year
  • 1 in 6 U.S. youth aged 6-17 experience a mental health disorder each year
  • 50% of all lifetime mental illness begins by age 14, and 75% by age 24

The National Alliance on Mental Health (NAMI) defines mental illness as a condition that affects a person’s thinking, feeling, behavior or mood that deeply impacts day-to-day living and may also affect the ability to relate to others. Recovery is possible with early treatment—which includes actively engaging meaningful roles in social, school, and work life.

According to NAMI, mental health conditions are far more common than most people think. Many aren’t aware of this unknown fact because they don’t want to, don’t like to, or are scared to, talk about them. Research suggests, that a stressful job, home life, genetics, or traumatic life events influence whether someone develops a mental health condition; some people are more susceptible. Biochemical processes and circuits and basic brain structure may also play a role. A mental health condition isn’t the result of a single event nor is it anyone’s fault. You are not alone!