The rate of Americans reporting they have been diagnosed with depression at some point in their life reached a new high in 2023.
A new Gallup poll published Wednesday reported that 29 percent of Americans said that they have been diagnosed with depression at least once throughout their lifetime, a slight uptick from 26.9 percent reported in 2022. The share of Americans who reported that they currently have or are being treated for depression also hit a new high at 17.8 percent.
The poll found that lifetime depression rates among Black and Hispanic Americans were also increasing. The share of Black and Hispanic Americans responding that they have been diagnosed with depression surpassed those respondents who are white, which the poll noted have historically reported higher rates of depression.
The new poll noted that the rate of women reporting that they have been diagnosed with depression at least once has risen nearly twice the rate of men since 2017. More than one-third of women reported in 2023 that they have been diagnosed with depression at some point in the life, while 20.4 percent of men reported the same response.
Women and those ages 18 to 29 are the two groups that reported the highest rates of currently having or being treated for depression. Nearly 24 percent of women responded that they have or are being treated for depression, and 24.6 percent of those ages 18 to 29 reported the same response.
The report cited the COVID-19 pandemic as a reason for increasing rates of depression among women and young people since 2017, noting that women were more likely to lose their jobs during the pandemic and were more likely to work in the medical field. The poll said that young adults were more likely to experience loneliness during the pandemic, which could be related to depression.
“Young adults, in turn, are more likely to be single and to report loneliness, particularly so during the pandemic,” the poll implications read. “They also need more social time to boost their mood than older adults, something directly impacted by COVID-19. Daily experiences of sadness, worry and anger all of which are closely related to depression – are highest for those under 30 and those with lower income levels.”
The poll surveyed 5,167 U.S. adults between Feb. 21 and 28 as part of the Gallup Panel, which is a panel of about 100,000 adults from all 50 states and Washington, D.C.
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