The second section of The 2013 World Happiness Report focuses on the most important factor of individual happiness: mental health.
(If you missed info on the first section, click here.)
Studies shows that about 10% of the world’s population suffers from “common mental disorders” of depression and anxiety. That’s 676 million cases.
And these mental health issues are the biggest single cause of disability and absenteeism. They also play a big role in presenteesim (being at work, but not really working).
Specifically, the report stated:
In most high-income countries, mental illness accounts for at least a third of those on disability benefits —and more if psychosomatic conditions are included. Finance ministries in high-income countries are typically losing at least 1.5% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in disability benefits and lost taxes due to mental illness.
In addition to affecting work, mental illness is also costly when it comes to physical health. People who are mentally ill are 50% more likely to die. And, their healthcare costs equate to at least 1% of a country’s GDP.
Mental illness can also have a significant impact on social relationships, family members and friends.
What about treatment? Here’s what the report states:
Cost-effective treatments exist, but even in advanced countries only a third of those who need it are in treatment. These treatments produce recovery rates of 50% or more, which mean that the treatments can have low or zero net cost after the savings they generate.
Thankfully, the report also included information of risk and protective. They include individual attributes, social circumstances and environmental factors.
Your Take Home:
Today, choose one item in the right column to address in your life. For example, if you decide to manage stress and adversity, you may want to go for a walk, meditate, listen to music or spend time in nature (all ways shown to decrease stress).
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