An Overview of Mental Health in St. Charles, Missouri
St. Charles, Missouri, is a quaint little city of approximately 70,329 residents. Situated on the Missouri River, St. Charles is full of beautiful sites, charm and history. For these reasons and several others, the river city happens to be the main destination of millions of visitors each year.
St. Charles doesn’t just look like a great place to live. According to AreaVibes and DataUSA, it IS a great place to live. The majority of households live relatively comfortably with a median household income of $59,059, a number that is slightly greater than the U.S. median household income and significantly greater than the state’s. Wage distribution is lower than the national average, meaning wages are distributed more evenly throughout St. Charles than in the United States.
According to AreaVibes, St. Charles scored an A in the areas of amenities and education. In terms of crime, it scored a B. It scored an overall livability rating of 81, which is significantly greater than the state’s largest city of St. Louis (which earned a score of 58). However, it scored lower than many other nearby cities, the reasons for which are explored below.
That said, even the nicest cities in the U.S. have their secrets. Like residents in many other U.S. cities, St. Charles residents struggle with mental health.
Factors That May Contribute to Poor Mental Health in St. Charles
From the outside, St. Charles seems ideal. However, when you take a look at the numbers, you may be able to see how even residents of this historic city fall victim to mental health disturbances. Some factors that may contribute to the city’s state of mental heatlh are as follows:
- Industry: According to DataUSA, the most common jobs held by Missouri residents were in administrative or management roles. Healthcare and social assistance, retail and trade, manufacturing and accommodations and food services are among the top five industries. Several studies suggest that workers in the healthcare industry have higher odds ratios for anxiety disorders, mood disorders, sleep disorders and other psychiatric disorders than reference groups. Another report shows that those who work in office jobs demonstrate higher rates of depression and anxiety than those who work in manufacturing jobs. The industries with the highest rates of mental health issues, according to one study, are retail, manufacturing and food. In those industries, workers reported higher rates of absenteeism, substance abuse and high levels of conflict.
- Cost of Living: The cost of living in St. Charles is by no means bad. However, it did score a C because of its index of 97. That’s seven points higher than the state’s index. Utilities and groceries are more expensive than the national average. When people struggle to put food on their tables or to heat and power their homes, they may feel anxious, depressed and stressed.
- Poverty: Though St. Charles appears to be flourishing, there are still residents who live in poverty. In fact, approximately 10.6 percent do. There is a known link between poverty and mental illness.
- Excessive Drinking: Though St. Charles scores far lower than much of the other state’s counties in terms of substance abuse and adverse health diagnoses, it scores much higher than other counties in terms of excessive drinking. According to the stats, the county has a drinking prevalence rate of 20 percent, making it one of the highest in the state. Excessive drinking is associated with depression, anxiety, poverty and other adverse health conditions.
Availability of Mental Health Care in St. Charles, MO
The state as a whole suffers in terms of access to mental health care. According to a recent NPR report, Missouri residents lack access to affordable mental health and substance abuse care. In fact, the state’s parity laws are well below the federal standard, something advocates are working to change in the coming years. The expert being interviewed attributes lack of available care to the stigma surrounding mental illness.
E-Counseling Is Ready To Help
If you or a loved one live with mental illness in St. Charles, you shouldn’t have to wait until the state gets its act together to get the care and attention you need. E-Counseling’s directory allows you to type in your zip code and find qualified, certified and compassionate therapists near you. If you want to get on the road to recovery sooner rather than later, check out the directory today.