An Overview of Mental Health Resources in Waterbury, Connecticut
The bustling city of Waterbury, Connecticut is home to an impressive 108,000 people, as per 2017 statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau. More intriguingly is how that figure is changing as time goes on. Waterbury’s population is dissimilar to most other American cities. Every decade or so, the number of residents of Waterbury goes own by approximately two percent. For many, this provides the perfect balance between urban and suburban living, Waterbury’s citizenry is not nearly as packed together as other similarly situated cities.
It is not hard to see why so many people find Waterbury appealing. Amenities are abundant and easy to access. And, if you are someone who favors walking or biking over driving to a location, you should be happy to know Waterbury’s neighborhoods are exceptionally walkable with plenty of bike lanes. Moreover, the city has a surprisingly efficient public transportation system ready to affordably take you from point A to point B.
The primary motivation behind a family’s decision to move to Waterbury is identical to most other places in the United States. However, not everyone who is willing to participate in the workforce is able to find employment. Those who are able to land a job are not always able to maintain it – especially with layoffs happening regularly. Waterbury’s economic woes are ancillary to another complex issue. Experts are saying the city of Waterbury is going through a “mental health crisis.” Let’s go over what that entails, why the situation in Waterbury is so poor, and what you can do to get in contact with a local therapist who can help if you are in need.
An Overview of Mental Health in Waterbury, Connecticut
Unfortunately, mental health across America is swiftly deteriorating. Chances are, you probably know someone who struggles with mental illness, if not yourself. A particularly alarming report from the National Alliance on Mental Illness estimates almost 20 percent of American adults suffer from mental illness at some point during any given year. To much dismay, narrowing the scope of the statistics fails to yield more hopeful results. As per a 2017 study commissioned by Mental Health America, the state of Connecticut as a whole can be doing much better in terms of tackling mental illness and improving access to care. In this context and for future reference, the term mental illness refers to any diagnosable psychiatric/behavioral disorder ranging in severity. For example, clinical depression or schizophrenia. So, what is causing the mental health situation in Waterbury, specifically, to be so poor?
Most prominent of all, and as mentioned previously, the city’s economy is not particularly healthy. 2017 data from the U.S. Census Bureau suggests the average income per capita in Waterbury is a whopping 30 percent lower than the rest of the country. Furthermore, inhabitants of the city are almost 75 percent more likely to suffer from chronic unemployment than the typical American citizen. Unemployment tends to breed poverty. Regrettably, Waterbury is no exception in that regard.
The relationship between poverty and mental health is not insignificant. According to a recent report published by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), American adults living below the federal poverty level are more than two times as likely to be dealing with a diagnosable mental health condition. Officials are acknowledging the need to alleviate the city’s rampant crime rate. But results are not going to come to fruition overnight. In the meantime, the dangerous nature of Waterbury is certainly negatively influencing the overall mental health of the community.
The Trouble of Finding a Suitable Therapist in Waterbury, Connecticut
A harsh reality many are dealing with across the nation is the fact that reaching out to a therapist can be troublesome. To the surprise of many, not very many people who are mentally ill get mental health care in America. A 2018 study from the National Institute of Mental Health estimates a clear majority (57 percent) of Americans who have a mental disorder receive no treatment whatsoever during any given year. Experts are partly putting the blame on the nationwide shortage of mental health professionals providing patients with treatment.
In the case of Waterbury, specifically, officials are identifying ineffective legislation, unemployment, and stigma surrounding mental illness as being chief barriers to access to mental health care. As per the U.S. Census Bureau, residents of Waterbury are significantly more likely to be living with no form of health insurance. A good chunk of these people is undoubtedly low-income earners, too. For them, the out-of-pocket expense of counseling is not economically feasible.
Mental Health Resources in Waterbury, Connecticut
In a slightly more positive light, thanks to attention from both state and federal entities, more funding is going toward initiatives and organizations who focus on improving the community’s mental health. A good number of clinics which offer a bevy of services and treatment solutions are opening their doors all over the state. Grandview Adult Behavioral Health is a local psychiatric hospital providing those resources to those in the Waterbury area. Choices Mental Health Association is another Waterbury-based organization which emphasizes the need to treat mental illness.
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