Depression Facts & Statistics

Did You Know?

  • In 2020, an estimated 14.8 million U.S. adults aged 18 or older had at least one major depressive episode with severe impairment in the past year. NIMH: Major Depressive Disorder 
  • Rates of depression were higher among young adults between the ages of 18 and 29. CDC
  • Around 39% of adults with major depressive episodes did not receive treatment. NIMH: Major Depressive Disorder
  • 10.6% of physician office visits with depression indicated on the medical record. CDC
  • 4.6% of adults aged 18 and over with regular feelings of depression. CDC
  • An estimated 4.1 million adolescents aged 12 to 17 in the United States had at least one major depressive episode.
  • The rates of depression have been rising among adolescents in the United States. Greater than 1 in 20 children aged 6 to 17 in the United States, in 2011-2012, were found to have current anxiety or depression by parent report. (Bitsko et al 2018)
  • About 60% of adolescents with a major depressive episode did not get treatment. NIMH: Major Depressive Disorder

Major Depressive Disorder (MDD)

  • The leading cause of disability in the U.S. for ages 15 to 44; MDD can develop at any age, the median age at onset is 32.5 years old. NIMH: Major Depressive Disorder.
  • Nearly 21% of adults in the United States will go on to develop Major Depressive Disorder at some point in their lives (Hasin et al).
  • MDD affects more than 21 million American adults or about 8.4% of the U.S. population age 18 and older in a given year. 
  • Almost 49% of adults with MDD are not receiving treatment.
  • MDD is more prevalent in women than in men.

Depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide as measured by Years Lived with Disability. Almost 75% of people with mental disorders remain untreated in developing countries with almost 1 million people taking their lives each year. In addition, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), 1 in 13 people globally suffers from anxiety. The WHO reports that anxiety disorders are the most common mental disorders worldwide with specific phobia, major depressive disorder and social phobia being the most common anxiety disorders. (NIMH)

Persistent Depressive Disorder or PDD (formerly called dysthymia) is a form of depression that usually continues for at least two years.
- PDD affects approximately 3.1 million adults or 1.5% of the U.S. population age 18 and older in a given year. The average age of onset is 31 years old. (WHO)

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Content on this page was provided by ADAA member Richa Bhatia, MD, FAPA, Dual Board Certified Psychiatrist on November 2, 2020

References on this page:

  • https://www.samhsa.gov/data/sites/default/files/cbhsqreports/NSDUHDetailedTabs2017/NSDUHDetailedTabs2017.pdf. Accessed on Nov 1, 2020.

  • https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/statistics/major-depression.shtml. Accessed on Nov 1, 2020.

  • https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/depression.htm. Accessed on Oct 25, 2020.

  • Hasin DS, Sarvet AL, Meyers JL, et al. Epidemiology of Adult DSM-5 Major Depressive Disorder and Its Specifiers in the United States. JAMA Psychiatry. 2018;75(4):336–346. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2017.4602

  • https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/depression.  Accessed on Nov 1, 2020.
    https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/chronic-illness-mental-health/index.shtml. Accessed on Oct 25, 2020.

  • Bitsko RH, Holbrook JR, Ghandour RM, et al. Epidemiology and Impact of Health Care Provider-Diagnosed Anxiety and Depression Among US Children. J Dev Behav Pediatr.
    2018;39(5):395-403. doi:10.1097/DBP.0000000000000571

  • Katon WJ. Epidemiology and treatment of depression in patients with chronic medical illness. Dialogues Clin Neurosci. 2011;13(1):7-23.

  • Steffen, A., Nübel, J., Jacobi, F. et al. Mental and somatic comorbidity of depression: a comprehensive cross-sectional analysis of 202 diagnosis groups using German
    nationwide ambulatory claims data. BMC Psychiatry 20, 142 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12888-020-02546-8

  • Van der Kooy K, van Hout H, Marwijk H, Marten H, Stehouwer C, Beekman A.Depression and the risk for cardiovascular diseases: systematic review and meta analysis. Int J Geriatr Psychiatry. 2007 Jul;22(7):613-26. doi: 10.1002/gps.1723. PMID:17236251.

  • Spijkerman T, de Jonge P, van den Brink RH, Jansen JH, May JF, Crijns HJ, Ormel J. Depression following myocardial infarction: first-ever versus ongoing and recurrent episodes. Gen Hosp Psychiatry. 2005 Nov-Dec;27(6):411-7. doi: 10.1016/j.genhosppsych.2005.05.007. PMID: 16271655.

  • Mezuk B, Eaton WW, Albrecht S, Golden SH. Depression and type 2 diabetes over the lifespan: a meta-analysis. Diabetes Care. 2008 Dec;31(12):2383-90. doi: 10.2337/dc08-0985. PMID: 19033418; PMCID: PMC2584200.

  • Oladeji BD, Gureje O. The comorbidity between depression and diabetes. Curr Psychiatry Rep. 2013 Sep;15(9):390. doi: 10.1007/s11920-013-0390-3. PMID: 23933977.

  • https://www.cdc.gov/aging/mentalhealth/depression.htm. Accessed on Nov 1, 2020


Note: This website page is for informational purposes only and is not intended to provide medical or psychiatric advice or recommendations, or diagnostic or treatment opinion. This is not a complete review or description of this subject. If you suspect a medical or psychiatric condition, please consult a health care provider. All decisions regarding an individual’s care must be made in consultation with your healthcare provider, considering the individuals’ unique condition. If you or someone you know is struggling, please contact the 24x7, confidential National Hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or use the crisis text line by texting HOME to 741741 in the US, or go to http://www.suicide.org/international-suicide-hotlines.html for the suicide hotline number for your country.

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