The impact of mental illness, especially when it is untreated, is staggering. For the individual, mental illness can cause suffering, exclusion from society, and a reduced life expectancy. For the family, it can create heartache, stress, and even stigmatization from the community. For society, mental illness can mean millions of dollars in lost productivity as well as serious risks to the health and safety of others in the community as was the case with Jared Lee Loughner, whose case appears to encapsulate all the maladies that can occur.
In a recent article published in USA Today, numbers are listed from a SAMHSA report suggesting 20% of Americans suffer from mental illness and less than 40% of these individuals report they received any kind of treatment. To read the article in its entirety, follow this link: http://yourlife.usatoday.com/health/medical/mentalhealth/story/2012-01-19/Many-with-mental-illness-go-without-treatment-survey-says/52653166/1