Income loss linked to mental disorder

Reuters, Tuesday 5 Apr 2011

People have suffered a drop in income are more likely to suffer from depression, anxiety disorders and drug abuse

Researchers have found that people in the lowest income brackets had higher overall rates of attempted suicide, mood and personality disorders than those with the highest income .

The findings, published today in the Archives of General Psychiatry, are consistent with previous studies that have shown a link between low income and higher rates of mental disorders. However, the direction of that link has been unclear - it's also possible that having a mental disorder means people are likely to make less money. 

Surveys wrere analysed of almost 35,000 adults in the U.S. conducted on two separate occasions that were 3 years apart. Interviewers assessed study participants for a range of mental disorders, as well as asking them about their total household income.

Among all participants, about 1 in 5 had some kind of mental disorder at the time of the second survey.

In general, lower income was linked with a higher rate of almost all mental disorders the researchers analyzed, including mood disorders, anxiety disorders, and substance abuse disorders.

People in the lowest income bracket making less than $20,000 per year were also more likely to have a personality disorder, such as borderline or antisocial personality disorder, than those in the highest income bracket, with a household income of $70,000 per year or higher.

Those with the lowest income were also more likely to have attempted suicide at some point. 



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