Mental Health: Facts & Statistics
There are some challenges that confront the creative community in any attempt to show mentally ill characters in an accurate and realistic way. While there is a general list of symptoms for each illness, this does not mean that all, or even most, will be exhibited in one individual. These are still individual people whose illness will manifest itself in different ways. There is no one stereotype that will be accurate for all those suffering from one specific ailment.
Millions of Americans suffer from mental illnesses, and millions more deal with family members who are struggling with them. This means that a large portion of any audience will have direct experience with these medical problems. And many of those afflicted are not seeking the treatment they need. Studies have shown conclusively that as many as half do not because of the negative stereotypes associated with the mentally ill and the stigma that is attached to mental illness.
Here are some alarming statistics that make clear just how large the scope of the problem in the United States really is:
Please see the menu on the right for facts & statistics on specific mental illness issues and disorders.
Myths & Facts:
Specific Mental Illnesses: