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Mental Illness More Widespread Than You May Think [AUDIO]

Take a random group of six New Jersey adults, and chances are that one of them is taking medication for some type of psychological or behavioral disorder.

According to new data from Express Scripts, mental health medication is widely used in the Garden State, although the national average is slightly higher.

depressed
Flickr user Amy Wilbanks

Lynn Kovich, Assistant Commissioner of the New Jersey Division of Mental Health and Addiction Services, said she’s not surprised by New Jersey’s numbers, considering one in four adults nationwide experience behavioral health problems at some point during their lives.

“There’s been a lot of attention brought to mental illness…That it can be managed, certainly with medication,” Kovich said. “We’ve been working to reduce the stigma so that people aren’t afraid to seek help.”

The effort has been working, according to Kovich, as an increased number of people are seeking treatment for behavioral health problems.

The treated disorders can range from schizophrenia to anxiety. Kovich said today’s economic environment, plus the latest upgrades in technology, could be driving more people to need professional assistance with mental issues.

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