The Salt Lake Community College Student Association presented an interactive discussion about mental health on Thursday. This comes after a year where mental health concerns skyrocketed to new heights.
Statistics on the mental health crisis throughout 2020
A study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found a drastic increase in the number of Americans who contemplated suicide. The survey, conducted June 24-30, 2020, reported the following:
- 25.5 percent of Americans aged 18-24 — just over one out of every four young people — said they seriously considered suicide in the past 30 days.
- 16 percent of Americans aged 25-44 said they had contemplated suicide in the previous 30 days.
- 18.6 percent of Hispanic Americans and 15.1 percent of African Americans said they had seriously considered suicide in the previous 30 days.
- 10.7 percent of all respondents said they had contemplated suicide in the past 30 days.
Utahns experienced distinct lack of counseling and therapy
As the COVID-19 pandemic, the economic downturn, and other incidents lasted throughout the year, the mental health needs of the American people, Utahns included, continued to escalate.
A study from the Kaiser Family Foundation in October found not only an increase in suicidal thoughts among citizens, but a noticeable difference in the access to counseling and therapy.
“Among adults in Utah who reported experiencing symptoms of anxiety and/or depressive disorder, 26.6% reported needing counseling or therapy, but not receiving it in the prior four weeks, compared to the U.S. average of 22.5%,” the foundation stated.
Benefits of therapy
According to the American Psychological Association, about 75% of people who participate in some sort of talk therapy experience benefits.
Some of the benefits of individual therapy, according to Healthline, include:
- Help improve communication skills.
- Empower one to develop fresh insights about life.
- Learn how to make healthier choices.
- Develop coping strategies to manage distress.
The Center for Health and Counseling at SLCC is accessible to students at low or no cost and available via telehealth. To make an appointment, call 801-957-4268.