An Overview of Mental Health in Meriden, Connecticut
Meriden, Connecticut is a city located in New Haven County. In 2017, the population was estimated to be 59,927. It’s located halfway between the major cities of Hartford and New Haven.
The median annual income for Meriden households is $57,350, lower than the nationwide average of $61,372. Approximately 10.8 percent of Meriden residents live in poverty, compared to 12.3 percent of all U.S. residents.
People living in Meriden also deal with a variety of mental health struggles, including depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and suicide.
Mental Health Statistics in Meriden, Connecticut
Thanks to a health assessment by the MidState Medical Center, we can understand a lot about the mental health indicators in Meriden and the surrounding region. One key finding from the assessment is that Meriden ranks significantly lower in terms of mental and physical health than the rest of the area and the entire state. Here are the specifics of how Meriden scored poorly in comparison to the rest of Connecticut:
- 6 percent of Meriden residents have good mental health compared to 84 percent of Connecticut residents.
- 7 percent of Meriden residents have depression compared to 17.2 percent of Connecticut residents.
- 1 percent of Meriden residents have a healthy weight compared to 38.6 percent of Connecticut residents.
- 4 percent of Meriden residents currently smoke compared to 15.3 percent of Connecticut residents.
These numbers are proof that the people of Meriden need access to quality mental health treatment providers.
Substance Abuse in Meriden
According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, people often suffer from both a substance use and a mental health disorder. Due to the prevalence of co-occurring disorders, it is vital to understand substance abuse statistics of people living in Meriden. Here are some statistics from the Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction services about substance use by Meriden residents:
- 28 percent report alcohol as their primarily abused substance compared to 34.63 percent statewide.
- 10 percent were arrested for marijuana according to 2004 rates.
- 8 percent report cocaine as their primarily abused substance, compared to 14 percent statewide.
In addition, the City of Meriden states that 36 Meriden residents died from opioid overdoses in 2017. These rates of addiction and abuse of drugs may partially explain the mental illness hurdles facing Meriden.
Divorce Rate in Meriden
Another important mental health indicator is divorce. According to doctors, the end of a marriage can result in anxiety, depression, substance abuse, insomnia, drastic weight changes, and chronic health issues. This is important because Meriden ranks 7th in the list of Connecticut cities with the highest divorce rates. The data is based on the percentage of people who are currently divorced. Meriden’s divorce rate is 11.9%. As of the release of this data, there was a total of 6,451 divorcees in Meriden.
The Trouble of Finding a Suitable Therapist in Meriden, Connecticut
According to the MidState Medical Center assessment referenced earlier, the core concerns about mental health issues in Meriden are:
- Shortage of providers
- Lack of same-day access
- Insufficient insurance that covers behavioral health
- Limited outpatient care
- Lack of affordable options
Plus, the U.S. Census Bureau shows that six percent of Meriden residents don’t have any health insurance. All of this goes to show that the community has significant areas that need improvement in order to address mental health issues.
Mental Health Resources in Meriden, Connecticut
Thankfully, there are some optimistic findings regarding mental health as well. For example, New Haven County and even the nearby Hartford and Middlesex Counties have better ratios of mental health providers to population than the best counties in all of America. Data USA backs this up by showing that there are 366 mental health providers per 100,000 people in Meriden. According to the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, there are a variety of services in and near Meriden, including services for crisis intervention, addiction, and inpatient treatment facilities.