15% of US children received mental health treatment in 2021, study reveals

Recent research conducted by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has revealed that approximately 15% of children in the United States received treatment for mental health disorders in 2021.

The findings, released by the CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics, highlight the prevalence of mental health conditions such as attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or anxiety among school-age children.

Statisticians analyzed data from the 2021 National Health Interview Survey to determine the percentage of children who had received mental health treatment in the past year. The report indicates that the majority of treatments occurred among adolescents aged 12 to 17. Additionally, boys were more likely than girls to have been prescribed medications for their mental health.

The data reveals that during 2021, 14.9% of children between the ages of 5 and 17 had received treatment for their mental health. This includes 8.2% of children who had taken medications and 11.5% who had received counselling or therapy from a mental health professional. Further analysis by age group demonstrates that 18.9% of children aged 12 to 17 were treated for mental health concerns, compared to 11.3% of children aged 5 to 11.

Regarding medication usage, the researchers found that an estimated 9% of boys, as opposed to 7.3% of girls, had taken medication for their mental health. However, no significant difference was found in the percentage of boys and girls who had received counselling or therapy, with 11% of boys and 12.1% of girls reported to have undergone such treatments.

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