The prevalence of mental illness

Analysis of data on the prevalence of mental illness among the population in the dynamics of prior years reveals their significant growth. So, in comparison with the same data at the beginning of the century modern prevalence of mental illness has increased in several times. But it would be wrong to conclude that the growth of mental diseases. It is known that the identification of the mentally ill depends on the availability of mental health care for the population, tolerance family, society for the mentally ill, etc. Obstacle for seeking psychiatric help is also still preserved among the population biased opinion on the appointment of psychiatry. However, taking into account comments made, you can still make General conclusions about the prevalence of mental illness and the dynamics of their growth in recent years.
Driven foreign specialists data suggest first of all of the significant increase in the number of patients with borderline mental disorders. This group of mental disorders most closely related to the living conditions of the society, and these high figures, given foreign specialists, primarily due to the conditions of life of capitalist society: the emotional stress and mental tension (alarm for tomorrow, discrimination and other) and the cultivation of low interests, cruelty, violence, greedy.
The prevalence of mental illness in our country also find the famous growth. However, it is mainly due to not increase the incidence and detection of patients with mild forms of mental disorders, which previously was not registered with a psychiatrist. It should be emphasized that the total number of mentally ill in our country is much lower than in capitalist countries. Especially noticeable differences in respect of psychopathy and neurosis, i.e., those illnesses, the occurrence of which is directly connected with the living conditions of society.
In Leningrad and Moscow, where many decades there is an effective mental health care, under the supervision of psychoneurological dispensaries were mentally ill, the number of which amounted to 3% of the total population. In recent years special attention is paid to the mental state of the patients coming to the clinic.
Table 1. The contingent of the mentally ill, taken on account in the year in mental hospitals and psychiatric office on the basis of the territorial polyclinics [Kozyrev Century N., Smulevich A. B., 1982]

Diagnosis Specific weight against all taken on account, %
psychiatric Cabinet clinic dispensary
Manic-depressive psychosis and cyclothymia
Necrosis and reactive States
Vascular diseases and organic brain damage




According to foreign and Soviet specialists, among such patients a high percentage of persons (10-30)in need of psychiatric care. However, most of these patients avoid treatment by a psychiatrist. Doctor-nasihat may be forced to pay back support for the mentally ill in hospital and non-hospital settings. It should also be borne in mind that only a small part of the mentally ill has a permanent loss of ability to work, while the rest work in conditions of total production. These persons require special attention from doctors profpatologii catering to different enterprises. Special treatment and preventive measures should be implemented taking into account the influence of occupational hazards on the psyche of workers of the given enterprise. Thus, where the knowledge of psychiatry expands the knowledge of the physician pathology of man and allows him to provide a first, non-specialized medical assistance, correctly identify ways of preventing. It is also one of the important tasks in teaching psychiatry.
Another important task is to prepare future specialists to the complex assessment of patients from the position of unity of mental and somatic.
This issue affects all medical specialties and includes such common for physicians issues as the role of psychological factors in the emergence of a separate (not mental) illness, is the psychological peculiarities of the personality of the patient for disposition and certain forms of somatic pathology. Knowledge of psychiatry allows more properly assess the role of psychological factors in the development and prognosis of various diseases, to determine the therapeutic and rehabilitation regimes, taking into account psychological warehouse of the patient's personality, to individually select the most effective preventive measures.
Also well-known role somatic pathology in the emergence of various mental disorders. Russian and Soviet psychiatrists had created such a direction as somatopsychic. Without a proper understanding of the origin of mental disorders cannot be determined tactics of treatment and assessed the status of the patient. In medical practice, widely used psychoactive drugs. Their function should be competent and justified.