An Overview of Mental Health in Novi, Michigan
People of nearly every age, race, and origin can suffer from mental health problems. These issues can strike either without warning or present at an early age if the individual has a family history of disorders like anxiety, depression, and schizophrenia. If left untreated, these problems can lead to destructive behaviors including drug and alcohol abuse, self-harm and suicidal thoughts or actions. Even people who live in areas that have been noted for their positive atmosphere, such as Novi, Michigan, can suffer from poor mental health; however, before help can be sought, it is important to understand what might be causing some of these problems and how to spot the symptoms before they have a severely negative impact on those experiencing them.
Economic Factors That May Affect Mental Health in Novi
Most of Novi, Michigan’s 58,416 residents enjoy a life of plenty. The area is known for its wide range of amenities, good schools and has a low unemployment rate of 2.2 percent, which is two percent lower than the national average. This means that most people in the city who want to work have jobs in management and the automotive, educational and manufacturing sectors. However, despite job availability and a wide array of opportunities, some economic factors in Novi may be affecting people’s mental health.
One of the most puzzling bits of data concerning Novi is that despite the low unemployment rate, 7.2 percent of people in the city live in poverty. Many of those who experience poverty are disabled, with females experiencing this issue more than men. While some of these disabled individuals may qualify for government assistance, those who do not have access to such help may struggle with a variety of mental health issues that include:
- Chronic depression
- Anxiety disorder
- Bipolar disorder
- Suicidal thoughts and actions
Those in Novi who are working are generally not immune to experiencing mental health problems. The cost of living in the city is quite higher than in other parts of the state, and while the average income of a Novi resident is over $16,000 greater than other Americans, this may be causing anxiety and depression for those who are not happy in their jobs or who feel pressure to maintain the economic stability of their families. This may be contributing to the high suicide rate among Michigan men, who are typically the breadwinners of a family.
Environmental Factors and Mental Health in Novi
While Novi boasts many positive aspects for its residents, there may be several environmental factors causing or affecting poor or unstable mental health. For example, there are only 177 sunny days in the city, while there are over 200 nationwide, and the long, bitterly cold winters can affect people’s moods and make them feel depressed, lethargic or sad. The area also sees a large amount of snow each year, 15 inches more annually than the rest of the nation.
While the majority of people living in Novi are Caucasian, there are also those of African-American, Asian and Latino descent that reside in the city as well. However, these populations are small and very few other languages than English are spoken in most households. This may cause non-whites to feel isolated or misunderstood, with very few resources available to them when it comes to meeting others who share their culture.
The Challenges of Finding Mental Health Treatment in Novi
There are several factors that may be preventing people in Novi from seeking the mental health care they require. While the number of therapists and other professionals in this area are plentiful, not every resident has access to insurance that covers their treatment. Young people who are still dependent on their parents are the most commonly covered, but older residents struggle with coverage problems such as:
- Limited federal funding for mental health treatment
- Costly out-of-pocket copays
- Plans that change or reduce coverage often
Novi veterans may also be at risk for depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder and other issues, especially for those who served in the Vietnam War. There are more Vietnam vets in Novi than from any other military conflict, and these individuals can be prone to a variety of mental illnesses that may lead to risky behavior and suicide. Some of these veterans may not be able to reach assistance because of the severity of their problems, poverty or disability.