Why is mental health on the rise? The rise in mental health conditions is well documented by both the CDC and the National Survey on Drug Use and Health. This rise in major depressive episodes, the most common type of depression, is a result of an increase in drug use and abuse. While the reasons behind this increased risk for depression are complex, fewer than one third of youth in the United States receive consistent mental health care. Among those who receive care, Maine ranks high, with a rate one sixth higher than Vermont.
In developing countries, an increase in mild psychiatric conditions is due to new treatments, a growing population, and an improved service model. The transition from a natural science understanding of life to a psychological one has made mental health a major problem. However, the need for better mental health care is greater than ever. The World Bank has recently published a report describing the disproportionate burden of mental disorders.
The COVID-19 virus brought mental health to the forefront of the public’s attention. It was estimated that one in five adults had sought help for mental health conditions before the virus began to spread through the community. Research into the brain’s mechanisms requires the work of diverse scientists. Those who address mental health are needed in any society. And while addressing mental health has always been a priority for many scientists, a growing number of new research is being conducted in this area.