What Christians Should Know About Depression and Anxiety
Depression and anxiety are reaching epidemic levels within the United States. It is estimated that 10 percent of all adults report experiencing depression at some point in their lives, and 18 percent will experience anxiety. Yet, these mental health issues are two of the most commonly dismissed mental illnesses in society.
The problem lies in undereducation, misconceptions about the illnesses, and a culture that often overlooks mental health in general.
These problems exist in and outside of the church. It may seem like I am often harsh on the reactions from the church to mental illness, but many of the problems supporting the high rates of mental illness in the modern age exist throughout our entire society. However, many Christian groups have additional stigma that can turn make the situation even worse.
To explain it in another way, there are two different groups of misconceptions and misunderstandings about mental health. Those that exist in the wider American culture are equally dangerous, but the misunderstandings within the church are often unique and only compound the issue.
Brandon W. Peach noticed these two separate forms of misunderstanding and sought to address the issues specific to the church with an article titled “5 Things Christians Should Know About Depression and Anxiety”.
As Christians are gradually beginning to reform how we talk about and respond to mental health, this article offers a good starting place for addressing many of the misunderstandings that fuel the stigma around mental health and explaining how we can more compassionately think about depression, anxiety, and all mental illness.