Published: Fri, October 12, 2018
Medical | By Johnnie Horton

Common Mental Health Disorders Start Before Age 14

Common Mental Health Disorders Start Before Age 14

This week, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released a Special Report on the effect of the world warming 1.5°C or more above pre-industrial levels.

That said, Nick Obradovich, lead author of the study and a research scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Media Lab, told CNN that the exact correlation between mental health problems and increased temperatures is unclear. This could happen 22 years before the 2040 deadline set before, they add.

The global health organisation said this in a report: "Coming of age: Adolescent health" to mark the World Mental Health Day commemorated on Wednesday.

Especially significant given the dire United Nations climate change report is the authors' finding that people affected by Hurricane Katrina had a 4 percent higher prevalence of mental-health issues than people in comparably sized communities who had not experienced a natural disaster.

Half of all mental disorders begin at the adolescent age - before the age of 14 - but most cases go undetected and untreated, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has said.

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About 2 million people from 263 cities across the country took part in a national survey called the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System ran by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Between 2002 and 2012, almost 2 million participants were asked this question: "Now thinking about your mental health, which includes stress, depression, and problems with emotions, for how many days during the past 30 days was your mental health not good?"

The data also reveals that the risk of mental health related issues is more likely to affect people with low incomes and women as compared to men. Meanwhile, months with an increase of precipitation can increase the probability of mental health issues by 2 percent. And over five years, a one degree Celsius increase in average temperature results in an even greater prevalence of mental difficulties. Increase in evaporation also leads to more rain and storms they add. When the maximum daily temperature averaged 86 degrees Fahrenheit or above, the odds that people would experience poor mental health were 1 percentage point higher than in months when the average high temperature was between 50 and 59 degrees, and 0.5 percentage points higher than when the average high temperature was between 77 and 86 degrees.

By comparing hurricane victims with other Americans, the researchers were able to estimate just how much the exposure to Katrina was associated with changes in mental health. "There are many other place-specific factors that may moderate the effect". "We gathered about a decade's worth of data from this survey, which is about two million people responding to the same question".

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