June is Men’s Health Month. According to Mental Health America, there are over 151 million men in the USA and reportedly about 6 million of those men are affected by depression per year. Here are some other statistics about men’s mental health:
Approximately 19.1 million American adults have an anxiety disorder - about 3 million men have agoraphobia, panic disorder or some kind of phobiaAbout 2.3 million Americans are affected by bipolar disorder - the onset for men being between the ages of 16-25
Approximately 3.5 million people in the USA are diagnosed with a psychotic disorder, where 90% of that number who are diagnosed with schizophrenia are commonly men by the age of 30
Males account for 10% of patients with anorexia or bulimia and 35% of patients who have binge-eating disorder
White men over the age of 85 comprise the highest rates of suicide in the USA
Male suicides have been on the rise since 2000 and is the 7th leading cause of death among males
In 2010, over 38,000 deaths were by suicide in the USA and over ¾ of these suicides were men
The post by Mental Health America is robust providing additional facts and data for men navigating substance use and the impact of mental health on men in the LGBTQ+ community. For all men, some great recommendations I can make to navigate mental health include fostering healthy social supports, try/maintain hobbies and recreational activities, exercise regularly, maintain a healthy diet and utilize therapy. Although these are common recommendations I would give to anyone to improve their mental health, my experience of working with male identified clients would emphasize the importance of this list - especially fostering a social support system.
Lastly, here are a few resources/numbers that can be used if mental health is difficult to manage after trying the list above:
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or call or text 988
SAMHSA’s National Helpline: 1-800-662-HELP (4357)
NAMI Helpline: 1-800-950-NAMI (6264) or text “NAMI” to 741741
Lou Lim, LMHC, REAT is a licensed mental health counselor and registered expressive arts therapist (REAT) with a master's degree in Expressive Therapy and Mental Health Counseling from Lesley University. He is a member of the International Expressive Arts Therapy Association and on the committee for REAT credentialing. He has 13 years of experience in counseling and expressive therapy working with children, adolescents, teenagers, adults, and retirees.