News23ABC In-Depth


How many people are impacted by mental illness in the United States?

More people than you think
Posted: 4:58 PM, Apr 20, 2022
Updated: 2022-04-20 19:59:05-04
Mental Illnesss, Depression (FILE)

(KERO) — Mental illness is a personal and quiet struggle that may impact more people than you think.

23ABC took an in-depth look at a 2020 study from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration that illustrates the scope of this issue.

According to the study, 1 in 5 U.S. adults experiences mental illness each year. And 1 in 20 U.S. adults experiences a serious mental illness each year.

1 in 5 U.S adults reports that the pandemic had a significant negative impact on their mental health.

NAMI 2020MH ByTheNumbers Adults

The study also says 1 in 6 U.S. youth ages 6-to-17 experience a mental health disorder each year. And 50-percent of almost all mental illnesses begin by age 14, and 75-percent by age 24.

NAMI 2020MH ByTheNumbers Youth

Among people aged 12 and older who drink alcohol, 15% report increased drinking. Among people aged 12 and older who use drugs, 10% report increased use.

Annual prevalence of mental illness among U.S. adults, by demographic group:

  • Non-Hispanic Asian: 13.9%
  • Non-Hispanic white: 22.6%
  • Non-Hispanic black or African-American: 17.3%
  • Non-Hispanic American Indian or Alaska Native: 18.7%
  • Non-Hispanic mixed/multiracial: 35.8%
  • Non-Hispanic Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander: 16.6%
  • Hispanic or Latino: 18.4%
  • Lesbian, Gay or Bisexual: 47.4%

Over 12 million U.S adults had serious thoughts of suicide. Sadly suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death among people ages 10-to-34.