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An Overview of Mental Health in Huntington Park, California
Huntington Park, not to be confused with Huntington Beach, is a Southern California city located in L.A. County. When most people think of L.A., they think of ritzy neighborhoods, substantial wealth and beautiful, beach-side views. Huntington Park has none of those things. In fact, Huntington Park is characterized by miles of pavement, warehouses and bleak concrete structures. It is also characterized by poverty. These fact, amongst several others, may contribute to the declining state of mental health in Huntington Park.
Los Angeles, like many metropolises across the nation, is experiencing a mental health crisis of sorts. According to one source, depression and anxiety are the two most common disorders with which residents live. However, Los Angeles, home to a diverse group of people, sees a diversity of emotional disorders. Other diagnosable disorders residents live with include bipolar disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, schizophrenia and post-traumatic stress disorder.
The National Survey on Drug Use and Health looked at illicit drug use and episodes of depression in LA residents over the age of 12. What it found was that 15.4 percent of the metropolitan statistical area, or 1.6 million persons, abuse illicit drugs in any given year. 4.4 percent abuse prescription drugs and 8.7 percent live with a diagnosed substance abuse disorder. 20.3 percent of residents binge drink alcohol, and 5.4 percent claim to experience major depressive episodes.
The suicide rate in Los Angeles County, like in other counties throughout the nation, has been on the incline. In 2007, the county saw 667 suicides. The rate was 6.8 percent. In 2016, the number jumped to 815, for a rate of 7.6 percent.
Factors That Contribute to Emotional Disorders
Based on the demographics, the 58,122 Huntington Park residents are particularly prone to mental health disorders. The median household income in Huntington Park is a low $38,106. This is nearly half the state’s median of $67,169 and significantly lower than the national median of $55652. The average income per capita is even more startling, at just $13,407. That is nearly one-third of the state’s average of $33,128. The poverty rate is Huntington Park is 28 percent.
Poverty is a major contributing factor of mental health disorders. According to Psychiatric Times, poverty is one of the most significant social detriments on mental and physical health. Poverty in childhood is associated with lower school achievement, worse cognitive, attention, and behavioral outcomes and higher rates of depressive and anxiety disorders. Poverty in adulthood is linked to higher rates of psychiatric disorders, psychological distress, anxiety and depressive disorders and suicide.
The cost of living in Huntington Park may make residents feel the state of their poverty even more acutely. The median property value in the area is $322,300. The cost of living index is 124, which is lower than California’s 138 but substantially higher than the nation’s index. The cost of living, combined with the below average income levels, likely contribute to poor emotional wellbeing.
Crime in Huntington Park is not good either. According to AreaVibes, which gave the area an F grade for crime, Huntington Park sees more of all types of crime than the state or the nation save for in two areas: burglary and theft. In areas of murder, rape, robbery, assault, violent crimes, vehicle crimes and property crimes, Huntington Park blew the state and nation out of the water. Fear of crime is associated with lower rates of mental wellbeing, as fear of crime prevents individuals from participating in the social or physical activities they need to in order to improve their emotional well-being.
Availability of Mental Health Care in Huntington Park
In terms of mental health friendliness, California earns an average rating of 25 out of all 50 states. In terms of access to care, however, it ranks slightly lower, coming in at number 31. Los Angeles is overcrowded, making it difficult for the city to provide enough mental health care workers to attend to the growing population’s needs. Though it is certainly trying, the mental health care industry falls short in this Southern California city.
If you or a loved one lives with an emotional disorder of any kind, find the help you need in a quick, convenient and discreet manner. Use E-Counseling’s directory to perform a quick search based on your zip code. Doing so may be the first step you take to change your life for the better.