Behavioural Health challenges are on the rise and have been for decades.

Coronavirus has shifted popular opinion and understanding of how important health is.
Perhaps still to be understood is the exact prevalence and impact of a variety of health challenges being experienced by clients; on the work of coaches, therapists, psychotherapists and those helping others with their life changes and challenges.
This page is an overview of some of the main data on these challenges, in some selected areas of the world.

COVID 19: There are serious lags in time between reliable surveys and research into mental health issues. The data below is drawn from latest reliable sources but almost all of these are pre Covid 19 pandemic. Estimates vary as to how much the pandemic has affected these figures and by what order of magnitude.


Mental Health in the UK

  • 1 in 4 people experience mental health issues each year (prior to Covid 19) Estimated to have doubled (1)
  • At any given time, 1 in 6 working-age adults have symptoms associated with mental ill health (3)
  • Mental illness is the second-largest source of burden of disease in England. Mental illnesses are more common, long-lasting and impactful than other health conditions (4)
  • Mental ill health is responsible for 72 million working days lost and costs £34.9 billion each year (5)
    Note: Different studies will estimate the cost of mental ill health in different ways. Other reputable research estimates this cost to be as high as £74–£99 billion (6)
  • The total cost of mental ill health in England is estimated at £105 billion per year (1)
  • People with a long-term mental health condition lose their jobs every year at around double the rate of those without a mental health condition. This equates to 300,000 people – the equivalent of the population of Newcastle or Belfast (6)
  • 75% of mental illness (excluding dementia) starts before age 18 (7,8)
    Note: Dementia is more accurately described as a progressive neurological disorder (a condition affecting the brain’s structure and subsequent function over time), and typically does not occur before the age of 30
  • Men aged 40-49 have the highest suicide rates in the UK (9)
  • 70-75% of people with diagnosable mental illness receive no treatment at all (7,10,11)


Mental Health in the USA

  • In 2019, just prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, 19.86% of adults experienced a mental illness, equivalent to nearly 50 million Americans.
  • Suicidal ideation continues to increase among adults in the U.S. 4.58% of adults report having serious thoughts of suicide, an increase of 664,000 people from last year’s dataset. The national rate of suicidal ideation among adults has increased every year since 2011-2012. This was a larger increase than seen in last year’s report and is a concerning trend to see going into the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • A growing percentage of youth in the U.S. live with major depression. 15.08% of youth experienced a major depressive episode in the past year, a 1.24% increase from last year’s dataset. In the bottom-ranked states, up to 19% of youth ages 12-17 experienced major depression.
  • Over 2.5 million youth in the U.S. have severe depression. Multiracial youth are at greatest risk. 10.6% of youth in the U.S. have severe major depression (depression that severely affects functioning).
  • Over half of adults with a mental illness do not receive treatment, totalling over 27 million adults in the U.S. who are going untreated.
  • The percentage of adults with a mental illness who report unmet need for treatment has increased every year since 2011. In 2019, 24.7% of adults with a mental illness report an unmet need for treatment.
  • Over 60% of youth with major depression do not receive any mental health treatment. Even in states with the greatest access, nearly one in three are going without treatment. 
  • Nationally, fewer than 1 in 3 youth with severe depression receive consistent mental health care. Even among youth with severe depression who receive some treatment, only 27% received consistent care. 
  • Both adults and youth in the U.S. continue to lack adequate insurance coverage. 11.1% of Americans with a mental illness are uninsured. 
  • Rates of substance use are increasing for youth and adults, even prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. 7.74% of U.S. adults and 4.08% of youth had a substance use disorder in the past year. Substance use increased 0.07% for adults and 0.25% for youth over last year’s report.


Mental Health in the world - summary

  • A 2017 study estimates that 792 million people worldwide live with a mental health disorder. This is slightly more than one in ten people globally (10.7%) Source: 1. urworldindata 
  • Europe: In 2021, more than 150 million people in the WHO European Region live with a mental health condition, and only 1 in 3 people living with depression receive the care they need. Source: 1. EuroWHO 
  • India: more than 14 percent of the total population in India suffer from variations of mental disorders. Source: 3. UnitedHealth 
  • Australia: 1 in 5 (20%, or 4.8 million) Australians reported that they had a mental or behavioural condition during the collection period (July 2017 to June 2018). Source: 4. AIHW
  • China:  Researchers estimated that 16.6 percent of Chinese adults had experienced mental illness at some point in their lives in 2017. Source: 2. source
  • Latin America and the Caribbean: 5% of the adult population has depression, but six of out of every ten do not receive treatment. Source: 5. source

Alcohol and Substance Use / Misuse - UK

In 2016, the prevalence of hazardous drinking among men in England was 24% of adult males (over 16yrs) approx. 4.8 million people Sources: Drugwise 
  •  Among women, the prevalence of hazardous drinking was 13%, approx. 2.6 million.  Sources: Drugwise                                                 
  • Around 1 in 11 adults aged 16 to 59 years having taken a drug in the past year. However, there were differences between age groups. Drug use was much more common among younger adults. Sources: ONS

Alcohol and Substance Use / Misuse - US

In 2019, about 20 million people in the United States had a substance use disorder in the past year, according to the most recent data report. Data for 2020 has not yet been released. Sources: AddictionResource 
  • According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 14.5 million people had an alcohol use disorder in 2019.
  • Excessive alcohol use is the cause of about 95,000 deaths per year in the United States.
  • In 2019, more than 10 million people in the U.S reported misusing prescription opioids.
  • In 2017, an estimated 18 million Americans aged 12 and older reporting misusing prescription drugs in the last year.

Obesity / Overweight

There is no ‘cure’ for being severely overweight or obese other than than consistent lifestyle change

Over 70% of Americans adults are either overweight or obese Source: OWID
39% of adults in the world are overweight or obese   Source: OWID
  and in Canada 67% Source: OWID
Globally, 8% of deaths in 2017 were the result of obesity Source: OWID

Diabetes in North America and the Caribbean

48 million adults (20-79) are living with diabetes in the IDF North America and Caribbean Region in 2019. This figure is estimated to increase to 63 million by 2045.

The national cost of diabetes in the U.S. in 2017 was more than $327 billion, up from $245 billion in 2012

From 2020 to 2030 the total cost of Diabetes Treatment and Societal Costs including lost productivity JUST IN THE US is estimated at more than $3.5 TRILLION USD

Source: IDF.ORG

  • 48 million adults (20-79) are living with diabetes in the IDF North America and Caribbean Region in 2019. This figure is estimated to increase to 63 million by 2045.
  • Over 1 in 3 (38%) of people living with diabetes in the IDF North America and Caribbean Region are undiagnosed.
  • 56 million adults (20-79) in the IDF North America and Caribbean Region have Impaired Glucose Tolerance (IGT), which places them at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Diabetes in the UK

The recently published NHS Digital report calculated the cost to the health service of treating diabetes at a record £1.07 billion for the period 2018/19 Sources: NHS Digital
  • The cost of diabetes to the NHS is over £1.5m an hour or 10% of the NHS budget for England and Wales. This equates to over £25,000 being spent on diabetes every minute. Sources: NHS Digital
  • It is estimated that more than 5 million people in the UK could be diagnosed with diabetes by 2025. Source:
  • 13.6 million people are now at increased risk of type 2 diabetes in the UK. Source:
  • Research has consistently shown that for some people, combined lifestyle interventions - including diet, physical activity and sustained weight loss - can be effective in reducing the risk of type 2 diabetes by about 50%. Source:

Diabetes across the world

Diabetes and Obesity continue to rise in regions around the world. 
  • 463 Million People had Diabetes worldwide in 2019. In 2045 it is estimated to be 700 million people. Source: IDF
  • There are about 60 million people with diabetes in the European Region, or about 10.3%  of men and  9.6%  of women aged 25 years and over. Source: WHO
  •  There were 116 Million people with diabetes in China in 2019   Source: STATISTA 
  • 77 Million people in India in 2019 Source: IDF
  • 55 million adults (20-79) are living with diabetes in the IDF MENA Region in 2019 Source: IDF   

There is no widespread cure for Type 2 Diabetes other than consistent lifestyle change

 “Our mission by is to develop a worldwide community of Recovery and Wellness Coaches & Associated Practitioners supporting individuals, organisations, businesses and communities in their Recovery and Wellness”                  

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founder FRC Coach Academy

Our RSA events lean heavily if not entirely in talking to and with each other, listening and responding. As perhaps expected from RSA

In any discipline such as recovery and wellness coaching there are a variety of TitleThing 1Title textBody TextWhy these principles can help you create powerful

In any discipline such as recovery and wellness coaching there are a variety of Core PrinciplesPrinciple  1Recovery and Wellness always comes from the person