People who answered that they had specific mental conditions and symptoms were classified as having a mental disability in an analysis of the Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP). In 1997, 14.3 million people age 15 and over (6.9%) had a mental disability. An estimated 3.9 million people had only a mental disability, 727,000 people had both mental and communication disabilities, 5.3 million people had both mental and physical disabilities, and 4.3 million people had mental, physical, and communication disabilities.
Furthermore, 8.1 million people (3.9% of the population) reported one or more mental conditions (learning disability; mental retardation; Alzheimer’s, senility, or dementia; and other mental/emotional condition). Another 6.9 million (3.3%) reported one or more mental symptoms that seriously interfered with their ability to manage day-to-day activities (frequently anxious or depressed; trouble coping with stress; trouble concentrating; trouble getting along with others). Finally, 4.6 million (2.2%) reported difficulty keeping track of money and bills.
|People age 15 years and older||Number||Percent|
|With a mental disability||14,267,000||6.9%|
|With 1 or more selected conditions||8,144,000||3.9%|
|A learning disability||3,451,000||1.7%|
|Alzheimers, senility or dementia||1,873,000||0.9%|
|Other mental/emotional condition||3,418,000||1.6%|
|With 1 or more selected symptoms that
seriously interfered with everyday activities
|Frequently depressed or anxious||5,615,000||2.7%|
|Trouble getting along with others||1,816,000||0.9%|
|Trouble coping with stress||4,659,000||2.2%|
|Had difficulty keeping track of money/bills||4,636,000||2.2%|
Source: McNeil (2001)
Surveys: SIPP, 1997