Thursday, May 30, 2013

Decreased patients with mental disorders in Japan?

How many people in Japan with mental disorders?

It is almost 3 million. The patient survey performed by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare clarified the answer.

Three million is not a few numbers, but the rate of the patients who have mental disorders in the general population in Japan is not so high, rather quite low among developed countries.

I guessed that Japanese patients with mental disorders do not tend to visit a mental clinic. Stigma against mental disorders is still strong. Moreover, many Japanese think that depression is to be overcome by one’s own effort or power of the soul. Recently, knowledge about depressive disorders is spreading among business persons. So, patients diagnosed as depression would be increasing gradually, I had prospected.

However, the prediction of mine has been broken, since 2011.

A number of the patients with mental disorders was decreased in 2011 from 2008.
Actually, the data in 2011 are incomplete, because of the earthquake and Tsunami disaster in 3.11. The adjusted data shows that the number of the patients with mental disorders is continued for 3 years.

Among several mental disorders, dementia and mood disorders were rapidly increasing. In 2011, dementia was increased as I had predicted. But mood disorders, including depression, were decreased.

I have not found the true answer. It is a quite difficult problem.
There is no report proving that depression is reduced after a disaster. Could not many patients visit to a mental hospital? The influence of the destruction of mental hospitals on this statistic is not so strong. People committed suicide is not increasing, as I wrote, even if Japan is still suicide rich country.

The next survey will be performed in 2014. The result of it will show me an answer.

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