While studies in the past have pointed to increasing prevalence of depression, mood swings, anxiety, thoughts of self-harm and substance abuse, the recent National Mental Health Survey has now confirmed it with empirical data.
It says that one in every 20 people in India suffer from depression.
Conducted by the National Institute of Mental Health and Neruo Sciences (NIMHANS), depression was reported to be higher in women in the 40 to 49 age group and among those residing in metros. Equally high rates were reported from among the elderly with 3.5 per cent of the population affected. The survey, conducted in 12 States, the report of which was formally released on Monday at NIMHANS, said that common mental disorders that include depression, anxiety and substance use are a huge burden on society affecting nearly 10 per cent of the population.
Addressing presspersons here, NIMHANS Director B.N. Gangadhar said this group of disorders was closely linked to both causation and consequences of several non-communicable disorders such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease, thereby contributing to a significantly increased health burden.