EMOTIONAL AND MENTAL HEALTH
MAJOR FINDING: Close to half of the women surveyed indicated a problem with depression serious enough to require professional help.
Of all women surveyed, 32 percent had stayed overnight at least once at a hospital or other treatment program because of an emotional or mental health problem not related to drugs, alcohol, or physical injury; 39 percent once received other forms of treatment for an emotional or mental health problem; 37 percent were treated at least once with medication for an emotional or mental health problem.
DEPRESSION: MOST COMMON DIAGNOSES
Women who were receiving or had in the past received treatment for an emotional or mental health problem were asked to state their diagnoses in their own words. The most common diagnosis reported was depression. Other conditions were post-traumatic stress disorder, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder. Women also re- ported having other emotional or mental health issues related to being survivors of violence.
Of those surveyed, 37 percent stated that they had at some point been prescribed (either inside or outside of jail) medication for an emotional and/or mental health problem. Most (58 percent) of those who had once been prescribed such medication were not currently taking it. Although the majority stated they did not currently need it, despite having needed it in the past, reasons for not taking medication varied: 13 percent said they had no access to medication, 3 percent said the medications did not help, and 13 percent said that they did not like the medication’s side effects.
Twenty-five percent of all women surveyed reported that a parent or someone they lived with while growing up had an emotional or mental health problem. These women were more than twice as likely to have an
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emotional or mental health problem themselves. They were also twice as likely to be clinically depressed as were the women whose parent did not have an emotional or mental health problem.
Chart 12: MENTAL HEALTH: FAMILY HISTORY
Treatment received for emotional/mental health problem
Other form of treatment
Key: Parent had emotional or mental health problem
Experiences of violence growing up:
Received inpatient treatment for mental health
Witnessed violence in the home
Women who said that they had experienced forms of violence while growing up were almost twice as likely to have stayed overnight at a hospital or other treatment program because of an emotional or mental health problem than were those who had not experienced violence growing up.
Chart 13: VIOLENCE IN CHILDHOOD AND MENTAL HEALTH