With nearly 1 in 3 persons in Alberta seeking treatment for mental health issues, and an unknown number more who are undiagnosed or untreated, it’s clear that there’s a problem that needs addressed pertaining to mental health in Alberta. Alberta Health Services (AHS) reports that these numbers — while shocking — are actually underestimates of the actual mental health problem facing the province of Alberta. AHS goes on to say that the numbers can never be accurate due to the individuals that don’t use the socialized health care system and instead rely on treatment from private physicians or mental health therapists. The prevalence of disorders was mostly stacked in the favor of anxiety disorders (28.8-percent of all cases) — such as generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety disorder, or phobias — mood disorders (20.1-percent of all cases) — such as clinical depression and bipolar disorder — impulse control disorders (24.8-percent of all cases) — such as sexual compulsion, kleptomania, and pyromania — and substance abuse disorders (14.6-percent of all cases) — such as alcohol or drug addiction.
The top five reasons Albertans sought medical help for mental illness were (in order):
- Developmental Disorders
- Substance Abuse
- Adjustment Disorders
In addition, suicide is consistently a leading cause of death amongst Albertans. Suicide is responsible for more deaths each year in Alberta than many other high profile causes of death, such as: vehicle accidents, AIDs or homicide. Of ever 100,000 people in Alberta, 14.4 take their own life each year. The national average for Canada sits at slightly below 12 per 100,000. With a total of 473 suicides in Alberta in 2007, there is clearly a need for qualified mental health professionals.
Suicide is often a symptom of a deeper psychological problem. Often stress, anxiety, depression or presences of mental health issues such as OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) or bipolar disorder are contributing factors to overall self-harm statistics. Many affected by these issues don’t seek help, or don’t receive the right kind of help in order to positively affect the struggles they face in their day-to-day life. With a combination of therapy and often prescription drugs, all of these relatively common mental health conditions are treatable, and can restore balance to the lives of those affected. Finding a qualified mental health professional in Edmonton, Alberta isn’t difficult, and choosing the right professional could just be the key to increasing your overall physical and mental well-being.