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Americans – More Than 10% Now Using Antidepressants

posted 01:16 AM EST, Thu October 20, 2011

The CDC says that more than 10% of Americans over the age of 12 are now using antidepressant medications. This is a 400% increase from 1994.

How common are antidepressants these days? Pretty common - in fact, according to data just released from the CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics, in some demographics, such as amongst women between the ages of 40 and 59, about 1 in 4 are now on these medications.

Other statistics of note from the report which is based on survey data from 2005 to 2008 include:

  • In total, 11% of Americans over the age of 12 now use antidepressant medications
  • Only about a third of people with major depression use antidepressants
  • Less than 1 in 3 taking antidepressants have seen a mental health professional within the last 12 months
  • 23% of women between the ages of 40 and 59 use antidepressants
  • 14% of whites use these medications, compared to 4% of blacks and 3% of Mexican Americans
  • 1 in 25 teens between the ages of 12 and 17 now uses antidepressants
  • Women are two and a half times a likely to use these medications as men
  • 30% of those on antidepressants have been taking them for more than 2 years and just under 14% have been using them for more than 10 years.

The full data release can be viewed at the CDC’s Databriefs Section .

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Story Highlights
  • 1 in 10: Now use antidepressants
  • Expertise?: Less than 1 in 3 on antidepressants have seen a mental health professional within the last year
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