Mental Health Care in Aurora, Colorado
Aurora, Colorado is a city that stretches across both Arapahoe and Adams counties. There’s also a small part of the city that’s in Douglas County. Aurora is considered part of the Denver metro area, which also includes Lakewood. Aurora has the third highest population of any city in Colorado. Top private employers in the area include the Raytheon Company, Kaiser Permanente, Northrop Grumman, and the Lockheed Martin Corporation.
As with so many cities in Colorado, there is a significant focus on outdoor recreation in Aurora. There are more than 6,000 acres of open space and natural areas, more than 100 parks, and many public and private golf courses. The city is also home to the Aurora Cultural Arts District, the Aurora History Museum and similar attractions and venues.
Despite all that Aurora has to offer, there are underlying issues that some people who live there deal with. These include mental health and substance abuse issues in particular.
An Overview of Mental Health in Aurora
For 20 years, the suicide rate in the U.S. has continued to increase. In fact, according to research from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the suicide rate across the United States went up 25 percent in the nearly two decades leading up to 2016. Colorado saw one of the highest increases compared to other states. The report showed that Colorado had an increase in suicides of 30 percent over this period.
The same research looked at some of the reasons for these increases. Researchers felt that the loss of relationships or problems in relationships were one of the factors leading to suicides in people without mental health conditions. There is also some information indicating increases in western states like Colorado could be due, at least in part, to more rural areas and the feeling of having less access to certain services, including mental health care.
Information cited by The Denver Post recently showed that in Colorado every year around 260,000 people including adults and children require treatment for severe mental illnesses. These mental illnesses include schizophrenia, major depression, and bipolar disorder. Unfortunately, even though hundreds of thousands are believed to need care, only around one-third of people actually get that treatment.
A study from the Colorado Health Institute showed that in the metro Denver area, which includes Aurora, anywhere from 10 to 15 percent of the population reported experiencing poor mental health.
Substance abuse is an issue as well. One study indicated Colorado has the third-worst drug problem of any other state, and the highest percentage of teenage and adult drug users in the U.S. Colorado is often ranked as the number one state for deaths related to overdose, primarily because of prescription pain medications. Other substances frequently abused in the state include heroin, cocaine, and meth.
In Aurora, 17 percent of residents had income levels below the poverty level in 2016, as compared to a rate of 15 percent for the entire state of Colorado. Nearly 19 percent of children in Aurora were living below the poverty level in 2016, compared to a rate of around 13 percent for the state.
Not just Aurora, but the state of Colorado ranks among the top ten states in the country for the highest divorce rates. The number of divorces per 1,000 residents is 4.4.
Mental Health Resources in Aurora
Many people who need mental health care seek treatment at the local emergency room. The state of Colorado only has 15 psychiatrists per 100,000 people, but there are options available to people. One example is the Aurora Mental Health Center.
The Aurora Mental Health Center has what is called Connect to Care treatment centers, where people can go for immediate treatment. The Aurora Mental Health Center is a nonprofit, private community health center. The organization can respond to crises anytime, and they have mobile crises response centers set up in various communities.
The Medical Center of Aurora also offers behavioral health services and treatment. Colorado Crisis Services is an organization serving communities in and around Aurora. People can call the center to receive counseling and help related to a variety of situations including suicidal thoughts, depression, substance abuse, anxiety, relationship problems, and family issues.
Connecting with an Aurora Therapist
There are many psychologists, psychiatrists, therapists and other qualified mental health care providers throughout Aurora and surrounding communities. Sometimes the hardest part of mental health care is knowing where to turn, however.
That’s why we created the above therapist directory. The professionals from Aurora and nearby areas are highly qualified, and many specialize in certain areas of treatment and care. You can use the above therapist guide as a helpful resource as you connect with a mental health care provider who meets your needs and can provide you with compassionate expertise.