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Stress, Anxiety,
& Depression


World Health Organization

National Alliance on Mental Illness

National Alliance on Mental Illness

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What is Stress?

     Stress can be defined as a state of worry or mental tension caused by a difficult situation. Stress is a natural human response that prompts us to address challenges and threats in our lives. Everyone experiences stress to some degree.

     Stress can manifest as fear, worry, inability to relax, increased heart rate, difficulty in breathing, disturbance in sleeping patterns, change in eating patterns, difficulty in concentrating worsening of pre-existing health conditions (physical and mental) and increased use of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs. 

World Health Organization

Is All Stress Bad?

Stress is part of daily life and can be a helpful


How many people are actually affected by Mental Illness?

More people than you might realize are affected by mental illness. Millions of people in the U.S. are affected by mental illness each year, or 1 in 5 adults. It’s important to measure how common mental illness is, so we can understand its physical, social and financial impact — and so we can show that no one is alone. These numbers are also powerful tools for raising public awareness, stigma-busting and advocating for better health care.

National Alliance on Mental Illness

You're Not Alone

  • 20.6% of U.S. adults experienced mental illness in 2019 (51.5 million people). This represents 1 in 5 adults.

  • 5.2% of U.S. adults experienced serious mental illness in 2019 (13.1 million people). This represents 1 in 20 adults.

  • 16.5% of U.S. youth aged 6-17 experienced a mental health disorder in 2016 (7.7 million people)

  • 3.8% of U.S. adults experienced a co-occurring substance use disorder and mental illness in 2019 (9.5 million people)

National Alliance on Mental Illness

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Image Courtesy of

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Why is shattering the stigma so important?

Stigma can lead to discrimination. Discrimination may be obvious and direct, such as someone making a negative remark about your mental illness or your treatment. Or it may be unintentional or subtle, such as someone avoiding you because the person assumes you could be unstable, violent or dangerous due to your mental illness. You may even judge yourself.

Some of the harmful effects of stigma can include:

  • Reluctance to seek help or treatment

  • Lack of understanding by family, friends, co-workers or others

  • Fewer opportunities for work, school or social activities or trouble finding housing

  • Bullying, physical violence or harassment

  • Health insurance that doesn't adequately cover your mental illness treatment

  • The belief that you'll never succeed at certain challenges or that you can't improve your situation

Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research

Information From Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research

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