The mental health challenge
Mental illness is everywhere
1 in 4 adults in England have a mental illness
Nearly 40% of all ill-health is caused by mental illness
1 in 3 families include someone with a mental health problem
It can turn lives upside down
Mental ill-health has the same effect on life expectancy as smoking
People with serious mental illness die on average 20 years earlier
People with mental health problems are three times more likely to develop diabetes
And it affects our whole society
At least a third of children whose parents have mental health problems will experience mental ill-health themselves
The economy in England loses about £100bn a year to mental ill-health
At least a fifth of police time is spent supporting people with mental illness
A few years ago I was having frequent manic and depressive episodes. When manic I would self-medicate with drink and drugs. When depressive, I wouldn’t get out of bed.
My life changed when a policeman came to my door and told me that my son had been killed in a car accident. The building blocks of my life disappeared – it was very frightening.
I developed late-onset post-traumatic stress disorder when I was in my early 40s. I started self-harming and had suicidal thoughts.