Almost a third of Brit women aged over 18 have taken antidepressants

January 11th, 2011 - 6:09 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Jan 11 (ANI): A new survey has revealed that almost a third of Brit women aged over 18 have taken antidepressants.

The survey of more than 2,000 girls and women in England and Wales revealed that around two-thirds have had mild to moderate mental health problems.

Penny Newman, of Platform 51 (formerly the Young Women’s Christian Association), said, “Millions of girls and women are facing mental health problems and they are telling us that they are not getting the support they need.”

“Our study reveals generations of women in crisis … women are often the linchpins of their families and their communities, and if three in five of them aren’t meeting their potential, they lose out, their family and friends lose out - and so does the wider society,” the Guardian quoted her as saying.

At least 13 percent of women experiencing mental health problems had quit a job while 44 percent had taken some time off work; more than a quarter had been off work for at least a week, the research showed.

The findings into the extent of mental health problems experienced by girls were reached after the group expanded the medical definition of “common mental health disorders” as defined by the Department of Health.

The definition of mental health problems used in the new study includes low self-esteem, poor self-confidence, and stress.

“Many women appear to be functioning normally or coping adequately with particularly difficult situations when in fact they are struggling to cope.

“But we identified many risky behaviours that girls and women engaged in as a result of mental health problems, including promiscuity, drug-taking and crime,” said Newman

Almost 30 percent of women polled had been emotionally or physically abused - one in four of whom admitted having felt suicidal as a result.

But around one in three women with low-level mental health problems have never sought professional help, the report, ‘Women Like Me: supporting wellbeing in girls and women’, found. (ANI)

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