An Overview of Mental Health in Bellflower, California
The residents of Bellflower, California, enjoy this city’s many benefits, such as its mild climate and close proximity to Los Angeles, which is less than an hour away. There are 77,687 people living in Bellflower, and a great majority of them work in a variety of employment sectors that include transport and storage, healthcare and retail. However, despite the overall prosperity residents enjoy, there are still a number of them who suffer from mental health issues that stem from problems such as divorce, addictive behavior and hereditary mental disorders. Before these problems can be addressed, it is important to understand how Bellflower’s social and economical factors may be affecting the way its residents receive mental health care.
Bellflower’s Economy and Mental Health
The top two industries in Bellflower is construction for males and healthcare services for females. That same report noted that over 10 percent of women are more present in the healthcare system than men, and the daily toil of seeing sick, injured and dying individuals may contribute to the development of mental problems that include:
- Depression: Witnessing people suffer may bring on feelings of hopelessness;
- Anxiety: The fast-paced, stressful environment of clinics and hospitals may raise anxiety levels;
- Addiction: Some healthcare workers may turn to prescription drugs to help them work long hours or cope with the pain they see each day.
While it may seem ironic that healthcare workers are so vulnerable to these mental health issues, the stress they undergo every day makes it a common thread in the industry.
Unemployment in Bellflower may also be a factor in the number of residents who experience depression, anxiety and addiction problems. The city’s unemployment rate is 5.1 percent, more than two percent over the national average of 3.7 percent. Being unemployed can contribute to feelings of worthlessness and failure, and these emotions, along with the pressure of providing for one’s family without a means of income, can be mentally devastating. In addition, despite a positive outlook for future job growth in the city, the median household income in Bellflower is $49,360, which is lower than both the state and national averages. As a result, 14.8 percent of the population live in poverty.
Social Issues and Mental Health in Bellflower
Bellflower has a significant Hispanic population, and one census survey revealed that over 50 percent of the population does not speak English in the home. That same report noted that only 18 percent of the entire city’s population completed college with a bachelor’s degree. This combination could lead to a serious gap in mental health care services for those who do not speak English outside the home and who do not have the means to learn it.
Gender can play a role in the development of depression, anxiety and other mental health problems. For example, Bellflower’s women are more likely than men to have days when they experience poor mental health, have depressive feelings and contemplate suicide. This is a trend that spreads throughout California and the nation, as women often feel a great deal of daily pressure from juggling work, raising children and maintaining a household. These feelings are likely more intense for single mothers and those who are divorced, as they must face social stigmas and stereotypes that are often placed on them by the community.
The Challenges of Finding Mental Health Services in Bellflower
While the number of uninsured individuals in Los Angeles County has dropped over the past few years, over 20 percent are still without health insurance. This can make access to mental health services difficult, as some require pre-authorization from a primary care physician. Since uninsured residents are more likely to go to family clinics and those that charge on a sliding scale, access to this kind of treatment will probably be limited.
The elderly residents of Bellflower also face unique challenges when it comes to finding help for their mental illnesses. Not only are many limited due to physical issues, finding affordable transportation can also be a problem. Bellflower does have a transit system; however, elderly residents who live outside the city might not be able to reach the bus stops or find a route that is close enough to a facility that might help them.
Connect With a Therapist in Bellflower
If you need help finding mental health care in Bellflower, it is not too late. Connecting with E-Counseling.com and its directory of therapists can help you find assistance based on your individual needs, both mental and financial. Find a therapist today and get back on track with improved mental health.