Mental Health & Substance Use
Emotional, mental, social, spiritual, and behavioral factors can directly affect our health and, if they are not addressed, these issues can affect our interpersonal relationships as well as our ability to live full and productive lives. People of all ages who have untreated mental health disorders are at a higher risk for unhealthy and unsafe behaviors, including alcohol or drug abuse, as well as at risk for chronic diseases like diabetes, heart disease and cancer. Alternatively, having a chronic disease can intensify the symptoms of mental health disorders.
By taking care of your mind, you are also taking care of your body, leading to a overall positive effect on your health and well-being.
Did You Know?
- Only about 17% of U.S. adults are considered to be in a state of optimal mental health.
- Approximately 20% of U.S. children and adolescents are affected by mental health disorders during their lifetime. Often, symptoms of anxiety disorders emerge by age 6, behavior disorders by age 11, mood disorders by age 13, and substance use disorders by age 15.
- Almost 15% of women who recently gave birth reported symptoms of postpartum depression.
- People with serious mental illness (SMI) die, on average, 25 years earlier than the general population.
While scientists are still researching the connection between the mind and the body, many studies have already shown that negative feelings like stress, depression and anxiety cause a spike in the hormone cortisol, which in turn suppresses the immune system.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are several indicators of mental health, including:
- Emotional well-being: feeling satisfied in your life, happiness, cheerfulness, peacefulness
- Psychological well-being: self-acceptance, personal growth including openness to new experiences, optimism, hopefulness, purpose in life, control of one’s environment, spirituality, self-direction, and positive relationships
- Social well-being: social acceptance, beliefs in the potential of people and society as a whole, personal self-worth and usefulness to society, sense of community.
Search this database for local resources providing treatment and support for mental health and substance use needs (it may take a moment to load when you click on a link). You can also call the Helpline Center by dialing 211.