An Overview of Mental Health in Danbury, Connecticut
Poor mental health is a problem plaguing the United States from coast to coast. While treatment received often depends on an individual’s financial and social statuses, the illness itself does not discriminate between age, race, gender, class or location. Danbury, Connecticut is no exception.
Danbury, with a population of 85,246 people as of 2017, is a part of the New York City metropolitan area. Its economy is centered on manufacturing, waste management and construction. The city’s median income was $68,068 in 2017, while the per capita income was $32,764. In 2015, the unemployment rate was 4.8 percent, with a poverty rate of 11.6 percent.
Mental Health in Connecticut
Mental Health America created a system to rank each state – plus the District of Columbia – on different aspects of mental health, such as prevalence of illness and access to care.
- In terms of adult mental health, Connecticut ranks at 15, with a respectable 5 in youth mental health.
- In prevalence of mental illness, Connecticut comes in around the middle with a rating of 27.
- In access to care, Connecticut ranks at number 7.
- The state’s overall ranking is 6.
Based on these numbers, the state seems to be handling mental illness with average to above-average results. In particular, most states tend to fall short when it comes to taking care of mentally ill youth; Connecticut ranks in the top 5 in this area. From 2007 to 2014, over 52 percent of Connecticut adolescents with major depression received treatment for the illness. The national average for the same timeframe was only 38.1 percent. The use of cigarettes, pain medication and other illicit substances was also average-to-below-average in Connecticut adolescents.
Connecticut’s care access rating is also fairly high at 7. The state has a high ratio of mental health professionals at 32.3 per 10,000 people. For comparison, the US average is only 19.9 per 10,000.
Risk Factors in Connecticut
While the state ranks higher than much of the country in mental health care, it has room for improvement in other areas.
One report showed that the rate of alcohol abuse or dependence among residents over 12 years of age was slightly higher than the national average. The same report also stated that only 7.1 percent of those individuals received any treatment for their alcohol dependence. The treatment rate of the same demographic with dependence on illicit substances was over 20 percent. While 20 percent is a low rate in the big picture, it is still much higher than the 7 percent rate of treatment for alcohol dependence, suggesting that the state could benefit from further focus on the issue of alcohol abuse.
Despite Connecticut’s higher-than-average mental health rankings, suicide is an ongoing issue. The suicide rate has been rising at a national level in recent years, Connecticut included. According to the CDC, the suicide rate in Connecticut rose 19.2 percent between 1999 and 2016. In 2016, the state’s rate was 10.1 suicides per 100,000 people, with a total of 397 deaths statewide.
Mental illness is also a risk factor for drug abuse, and consequently, death by drug overdose. In 2016, Connecticut had the eleventh-highest rate of drug overdose deaths in the country at 27.4 deaths per 100,000 people. The US national average was only 19.8 per 100,000. That equals a total of 971 overdose deaths in the state that year.
Resources in Danbury, Connecticut
If you or a loved one are dealing with a mental illness, the least you can take from these numbers is that you are far from being alone. There are many others with mental health issues, and many resources available to you. However, often due to the stigma around discussing mental health, it may be difficult to find those resources.
Another resource available to you is E-Counseling. E-Counseling is an online directory designed to help you find mental health care providers in your area who match with your individual mental health needs and goals. You have the choice to take the first step toward recovery today.