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Updated on January 6, 2024

Depression Statistics 2024

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Key takeaways

  • Depression is a serious mental health condition that produces a significant impact on a person’s life.
  • About 280 million people were diagnosed with depressive disorders in 2023 (WHO).
  • At least 21 million Americans have experienced a major depressive episode in 2023 (WHO).
  • Stress was the most common cause of depression in 2023 (American Psychological Association) .
  • Women are more prone to depressive disorders than men (WHO)
  • Depression is most common among young adults between 18-25 years (WHO).
  • Depression is the leading cause of death in teenagers and young adults with 2/3 of all suicide cases attributed to depression (WHO).
  • About 12 billion working days are lost to depression and anxiety annually. This leads a whopping loss of over $1 trillion per year in productivity (WHO).
  • Over 5% of adults suffer depression globally (WHO).
  • Anxiety and depression is responsible for over 95% of all suicide cases (WHO).
  • More than 15% of people using two or more medications have reported depression as a side effect (WHO).
  • 11.5% of youths/young adults have reported extreme cases of depression. (Turn Bridge)
  • Women have more access to health care treatment than men (Forbes)

How bad is depression?

Depression is a serious mental health condition that can have a significant impact on a person's life. It goes beyond the normal ups and downs that everyone experiences and can affect a person's thoughts, feelings, and daily functioning.

The effects of depression are not limited to emotional well-being; it can also impact physical health, relationships, work or school performance, and overall quality of life. It is essential to recognize and address depression early to prevent it from worsening.

Depression is the leading cause of suicides amongst teenagers and young adults. About 2/3 of people who commit suicide were depressed at the time of their death.

Let’s look at some numbers that show how bad depression has been as a mental health disorder in 2023.

  • About 4.7% of adults in the U.S. feel regularly depressed.
  • In January 2023, 22% of American adults showed signs of depression.
  • In 2020 alone, 8.4% of U.S. adults (21 million people) had a significant bout of depression.
  • 64.8% of adults with severe depression sought treatment.
  • Approximately 40 million Americans experience anxiety each year.
  • Globally, 322 million people live with depression.

How many people had depression in 2023?

Depression is described as the second most common mental health challenge in the world. Research shows that at least 21 million Americans have experienced a major depressive episode in the last 11 months. The risk factor for these episodes include but are not limited to family history, substance abuse, trauma and other mental health challenges like anxiety.

Information from the World Health Organization shows that about 280 million people are suffering from depression and depression-related challenges. Women are more prone to depression disorders than men.

What is the most common cause of depression in 2023?

Depression happens when a mix of social, psychological, and biological factors come together. If someone goes through tough life events like losing a job or facing trauma, they're more likely to get depressed. Depression can make things worse by causing more stress and problems, making it harder for the person to cope with life. It's like a cycle where depression makes things tough, and those tough things make depression worse.

The most common causes of depression in 2023 include but are not limited to the following;

  1. Stress
  2. Traumatic life events
  3. Physical health problems
  4. Medications
  5. Some recreational drugs and alcohol
  6. Other mental health challenges like anxiety

What age groups are most affected by depression?

Depression is frequently observed in adults within the age range of 18 to 25 years, representing a stage of life where individuals often undergo significant transitions and face various challenges. This period, marked by the transition from adolescence to adulthood, is characterized by increased responsibilities, academic pressures, career uncertainties, and changes in social dynamics. The combination of these factors can contribute to a heightened susceptibility to depression in individuals within this age group, underscoring the importance of recognizing and addressing mental health concerns during this pivotal developmental stage.

Economic impact of depression in 2023

Depression holds a significant impact on both individual well-being and the broader societal landscape. According to the World Health Organization, it stands as the leading cause of disability worldwide, contributing substantially to the global disease burden. This underscores the pervasive nature of depression and its profound implications for public health.

In the context of the workplace, mental health issues, including depression, grief, and behavioral conduct, rank as the second most common concern after family problems. This highlights the considerable influence mental health can have on professional environments, emphasizing the need for strategies to address and support employees facing such challenges.

The economic ramifications of depression are substantial, particularly in the United States. The Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance in 2011 estimated that depression costs U.S. workers approximately $100 billion each year. This includes a staggering $44 billion attributed to lost productivity. These financial figures underscore the need for comprehensive approaches to mental health support in the workplace, not only for the well-being of individuals but also for the economic efficiency of organizations. Addressing depression in the workplace is not only a matter of individual concern but also a critical component of fostering a healthy and productive workforce.

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National institute for mental health. Accessed 12/18/2023

Depressive disorders. Accessed 12/18/2023

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