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Mental Illness Linked to Other Health Problems

By Associate News Editor
Reviewed by John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on April 22, 2012

Mental Illness Linked to Other Health ProblemsAdults who had any type of mental illness in the past year were also more likely to have high blood pressure, asthma, diabetes, heart disease and stroke, according to a U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) report released last week.

Specifically, about 22 percent of adults with any type of mental illness in the past year had high blood pressure and almost 16 percent had asthma, compared to 18 percent and 11 percent, respectively, in adults without mental illness.

People with major depression in the past year had higher rates of the following chronic health problems than those without the disorder:

  • High blood pressure (24 percent vs. 20 percent)
  • Asthma (17 percent vs. 11 percent)
  • Diabetes (9 percent vs. 7 percent)
  • Heart disease (7 percent vs. 5 percent)
  • Stroke (3 percent vs. 1 percent).

Individuals suffering from mental illness also had higher rates of emergency department use and hospitalization, according to the report. Rates of emergency department use were nearly 48 percent for people with a serious mental illness compared to 31 percent for those without a serious mental illness.

For those with a serious mental illness, hospitalization rates were more than 20 percent in the past year and less than 12 percent for those without a serious mental illness.

“Promoting health and wellness for individuals, families and communities means treating behavioral health needs with the same commitment and vigor as any other physical health condition,” said SAMHSA administrator Pamela Hyde.  

“Communities, families and individuals cannot achieve health without addressing behavioral health.”

Source:  U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

Woman in the hopspital photo by shutterstock.

 

APA Reference
Pedersen, T. (2012). Mental Illness Linked to Other Health Problems. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 19, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/news/2012/04/22/mental-illness-linked-to-other-health-problems/37642.html