Depression in Black Communities
➯ 40% of white adults seek mental health care, compared to 25% of black adults (NAMI).
➯ The prevalence of depression for African Americans is 8.9%, compared to a 7.8% prevalence in White American communities (NIH).
➯ 60% of individuals in prison are black. 37% of drug arrests are black individuals. Illicit drugs and other unlawful activities are common for individuals with mental illnesses in an attempt to self-medicate (Black & African American, 2016).
➯ Stigmas and stereotypes that black individuals face, such as men not being able to show sadness or tears, keep men in black communities from reaching out for help (NAMI).
There are a lot of societal issues that our black communities in America face on a daily basis. It's tough to prove causation, but there is certainly a correlation between certain measures of affliction (like incarceration) and the rates of mental illness in this population. This is at the same time that black individuals are 15% less likely to seek care because of stigmas, a lack of access to care, etc. It's time we start making mental health resources more available across the board, but particularly within our black communities.
Black & African American Communities and Mental Health. (2016, July 28). Retrieved March 29, 2017, from http://www.mentalhealthamerica.net/african-american-mental-health
[FACE OF DARKNESS Documentary]. (2014, Feb. 19). Face of Darkness Documentary P.S.A./Producer's Statement. [Video File]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6F1e2SO1TZk&t=5s
NAMI. (n.d.). Retrieved March 29, 2017, from http://www.nami.org/Find-Support/Diverse-Communities/African-Americans