Mental Health Outlook and Care Options in Santa Clara, California
Located in west central California, Santa Clara is the ninth most populous city in the San Francisco Bay Area. The U.S. Census Bureau estimates its 2017 population at 127,134 residents, a 9.1% increase over the 2010 census counts. The city is located 45 miles southeast of San Francisco in the County of Santa Clara, also known as “Silicon Valley”. The area is home to several high profile tech companies.
One of the wealthiest cities in the country, Santa Clara has a median household income of $102,533, almost twice the median for California and the United States. The city also has a lower poverty rate than the state and the country with only 8.2% of its population living below the poverty line. The majority of Santa Clara residents also have access to health care with only 7.2% of its under 65 years of age population having no health insurance coverage.
Mental Health Concerns in the Santa Clara Community
Even though Santa Clara is one of the most affluent communities in the nation, behavioral health remains a top concern. According to the Santa Clara County Public Health Department, adult residents experienced on average 4.19 days of stress, anxiety or worry in the past month and 9% reported experiencing frequent mental distress, which is defined as 14 or more mentally unhealthy days in the past 30 days. Poor mental health is a term that refers to conditions such as depression, stress and anxiety and does not include serious mental disorders. As a matter of fact, 14% of Santa Clara’s adult population has been diagnosed with depression in their lifetime.
The Health Department also reports that 28% of Santa Clara’s middle and high school students felt so sad or hopeless that they abandoned their usual activities for 2 or more weeks in the past year. Additionally, 17% of high school students had serious thoughts of suicide in the past 12 months. According to the department’s Epi-Aid investigation of youth suicide, there were 5.4 suicide deaths per 100,000 in the age group of 10 to 24 year olds with the highest percentage occurring among males and 20 to 24 year olds.
Substance abuse among all ages also remains a concern in Santa Clara County. According to the Community Health Needs Assessment, 14% of adults and 11% of young people in the county self reported binge drinking. Almost one third of high school students reported marijuana use, 7% reported using cocaine, and 11% said they have used other substances such as ecstasy and prescription pain medication.
These statistics indicate that while wealth may allow individuals to access health care easier than those with low income, it does not necessarily prevent the occurrence of mental and behavioral health problems such as depression, stress and drug use.
Mental Health Care Facilities and Organizations in Santa Clara, California
Finding help for a mental, emotional or behavioral issue is extremely important as these conditions can be detrimental to every aspect of an individual’s life if left untreated. Even conditions such as depression, stress or anxiety can impact negatively one’s employment, education, personal relationships and in some instances can lead to self harm or suicide attempts.
According to County Health Rankings, Santa Clara County has a 330:1 ratio of residents to mental health providers, which is on par with the top performing counties in the United States. Some of the resources in Santa Clara that offer mental health and substance abuse care and services include Santa Clara County Behavioral Health Services, Bill Wilson Center, Pathway Society Inc., and Kaiser Permanente Behavioral Health Center. These organizations offer a variety of services and programs for all age groups suffering from mental illnesses and behavioral health issues.
Additionally, the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Santa Clara County has published an extensive list of information links and care resources for a variety of mental health conditions that can help you educate yourself and find the right help for yourself or a loved one in need.
Santa Clara residents can also reach out for help to one of the mental health providers listed in our directory. The counselors and therapists we feature are established professionals with stellar reputation, and are able to assist with various mental illnesses and conditions on your journey to better mental health and wellbeing. Before selecting a counselor or therapist however, take the time to familiarize yourself with their services, area of expertise and reputation.