Anxiety Statistics - Featured

29 Anxiety Statistics That Cause Worry

by Mira Rakicevic

Everybody worries from time to time. However, if you feel constant worry or fear about everyday situations, you may suffer from an anxiety disorder. Many people disregard this condition believing that they—or their loved ones—simply worry too much. But anxiety disorders are in fact the most common mental disorder in the US and can be treated like any other medical condition.

Still, the majority of people experiencing anxiety symptoms don’t receive adequate treatment, and their excessive worry interferes with their daily lives.

The Most Worrisome Anxiety Statistics

  • Anxiety disorders affect 40 million US adults.
  • Only about a third of the people with an anxiety disorder receive treatment.
  • 31.2% of Americans experience an anxiety disorder at some point in their lifetime.
  • The sales of books about anxiety increased by 25% in only one year.
  • The most common mental disorder in the UK is a combination of anxiety and depression.
  • Almost 50% of people suffering from depression also suffer from an anxiety disorder.
  • Generalized anxiety disorders are more prevalent in wealthier countries.
  • Anxiety disorders incur an annual cost of over $42 billion in the US.

Prevalence of Anxiety Disorders

1. Anxiety disorders affect 40 million US adults every year.

In other words, according to anxiety disorder statistics, they affect about 18% of the US population each year, which makes them the most common type of mental illness in the US.

(Anxiety and Depression Association of America)

2. 31.2% of Americans experience an anxiety disorder at some point in their lifetime.

According to the National Comorbidity Survey, almost a third of US adults suffer from one of the following anxiety disorders: panic disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, agoraphobia, specific phobia, social anxiety disorder (social phobia), post-traumatic stress disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, or separation anxiety disorder.

(Harvard Medical School)

3. Generalized anxiety disorders are more prevalent in wealthier countries.

Based on generalized anxiety disorder statistics, 5% of people have this mental disorder in high-income countries compared to 1.6% in low-income countries.

(Medical News Today)

4. The sales of books about anxiety increased by 25% in only one year.

According to the largest US book retailer, Barnes & Noble, this huge surge marked the period from 2017 to 2018. It seems there’s been a recent increase in the number of people who want help for their anxiety disorders.

(CNBC)

5. 41% of employees experience workplace anxiety.

A recent study found that high levels of anxiety in the workplace can considerably decrease job performance.

(Anxiety Centre)

6. Over 90% of people with generalized anxiety disorder have another psychiatric diagnosis as well.

Depression statistics show that major depressive disorder is the most common co-occurring mental health problem. In fact, Almost 50% of people suffering from depression also suffer from an anxiety disorder.

(The Recovery Village)

(Anxiety and Depression Association of America)

7. People are more likely to have an anxiety disorder if they have a family member with this mental problem.

Genetic predisposition is just one of the risk factors for developing an anxiety disorder. As most anxiety facts indicate, other risk factors include a traumatic experience, drug or alcohol use, other medical conditions, and environmental factors.

(Medical News Today)

Types of Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety Statistics - Types

8. 19 million Americans suffer from specific phobias.

This type of anxiety disorder affects about 8.7% of US adults. Specific phobias usually involve irrational fear of insects, germs, heights, or flying.

(Anxiety and Depression Association of America)

9. 15 million US adults suffer from social anxiety disorder.

Social anxiety statistics show that social phobia or social anxiety disorder affects about 6.8% of Americans, and it’s equally prevalent among both men and women. A 2007 ADAA survey revealed that 36% of people with SAD ask for professional help only after 10 years of experiencing symptoms.

(Anxiety and Depression Association of America)

10. 2.2 million Americans suffer from obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).

OCD is often classified as an anxiety disorder and is equally prevalent among men and women.

(Anxiety Centre)

11. 6.8 million US adults have generalized anxiety disorder (GAD).

People suffering from GAD feel constant and excessive worry. Anxiety disorders and the statistics associated with them indicate that only about 43% of them are being treated.

(Anxiety and Depression Association of America)

12. Panic disorder affects about 6 million people in the US.

This mental disorder often co-occurs with depression. Women are twice as likely to suffer from this disorder as men.

(Anxiety Centre)

13. Post-traumatic stress disorder affects about 7%–8% of the US population.

About 8 million US adults suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) every year. PTSD is more common among women. Anxiety stats show that about 10% of women experience PTSD in their lifetime compared to about 4% of men.

(National Center for PTSD)

14. 2% of US adults suffer from agoraphobia.

Typically, people with agoraphobia are afraid of public places, crowds, waiting in line, open spaces, and enclosed spaces, such as elevators.

(American Psychiatric Association)

15. 1%–2% of US adults have separation anxiety disorder.

People with a separation anxiety disorder fear leaving their home or being separated from loved ones, e.g. their partners, parents, or siblings. Studying anxiety in adolescent patients, statistics show that 1.6% of adolescents suffer from this type of anxiety disorder.

(American Psychiatric Association)

Anxiety Disorders Across Different Demographics

Anxiety Statistics - Women

16. More women than men suffered from an anxiety disorder in the past year.

According to the National Comorbidity Survey, 23.4% of women experienced an anxiety disorder in the previous year, compared to 14.3% of men.

(Harvard Medical School)

17. About 31% of US adolescents suffer from an anxiety disorder.

The National Comorbidity Survey estimated the prevalence of anxiety disorders among Americans aged 13–18. Teenage anxiety statistics indicate that anxiety disorders are more prevalent among female teenagers (38%) than male (26%).

(National Institute of Mental Health)

18. About 8% of children and teenagers have an anxiety disorder.

Interestingly, most people suffering from anxiety disorders develop symptoms before turning 21.

(ADAMHS)

19. 4% of children suffer from separation anxiety disorder.

This type of anxiety disorder most commonly affects kids aged 7–9. For younger children aged 18 months to 3 years, it’s normal to feel anxious when a parent goes out of sight.

(Anxiety and Depression Association of America)

Anxiety Statistics Worldwide

20. In 2015, 264 million people in the world had an anxiety disorder.

Based on the WHO’s estimates from 2015, the number of people with anxiety disorders accounted for about 3.6% of the global population. They were more common among women than men.

(World Health Organization)

21. 14% of people in the European Union suffer from an anxiety disorder.

According to the report on the prevalence of mental disorders in Europe, anxiety disorders are the most common.

(European Neuropsychopharmacology)

22. The most common mental disorder in the UK is a combination of anxiety and depression.

According to the anxiety and depression statistics, 7.8% of Britons suffer from these two mental disorders. Moreover, in 2013, about 8.2 million people experienced anxiety in Great Britain. 

(No Panic)

Symptoms of Anxiety Disorders

Anxiety Statistics - Symptoms

23. Up to 90% of people with generalized anxiety disorder have difficulty concentrating.

A recent study indicates that difficulty concentrating can be used as a diagnostic criterion.

(Healthline)

24. 74% of children and adolescents with anxiety disorders experience restlessness.

This is the most common somatic symptom of anxiety disorder in children, which is followed by stomachaches (70%) and blushing (51%).

(National Center for Biotechnology Information)

25. Anxiety can lead to sleeping problems.

However, most facts about anxiety indicate that lack of sleep can also lead to an anxiety disorder. Research shows that chronic insomnia increases the risk of developing an anxiety disorder. Fortunately, there are a number of ways you can relieve stress and anxiety, from playing relaxing music to meditating to exercising. It’s vital to improve your sleep quality since sleep deprivation can have a range of negative effects on your mental and physical health.

(National Sleep Foundation)

Treatment of Anxiety Disorders

26. Psychotherapy is the most successful treatment with a recovery rate of about 57%.

Medications are another generalized anxiety disorder treatment option. There is also a wide range of alternative treatments, which are usually used in combination with psychotherapy and medication. They include herbal supplements, relaxation techniques, yoga, and acupuncture.

(The Recovery Village)

27. Only about a third of people with an anxiety disorder receive treatment.

According to the ADAA, only about 36% of people with an anxiety disorder get treated, although there are a number of treatment options.

(Anxiety and Depression Association of America)

28. Over half of college students asked for help for their anxiety problems.

According to research on anxiety in college students and statistics analysis, anxiety can negatively affect learning. This can result in lower academic achievement and performance.

(Anxiety Centre)

29. Anxiety disorders incur an annual cost of over $42 billion for the US.

These costs account for almost a third of the total mental health costs in the US. About half of this amount, over $22 billion, is spent on healthcare services because people suffering from anxiety disorders are 3–5 times more likely to visit a doctor than people without an anxiety disorder. Additionally, they are 6 times more likely to be hospitalized for psychiatric disorders.

(Anxiety Centre)

The Bottom Line

Anxiety disorders affect people from all walks of life. Looking at the anxiety statistics, it seems that this mental disorder is becoming more and more prevalent. However, we can’t pinpoint the single reason why we’re seeing an increased incidence of anxiety issues. Some blame social media, while others claim that nowadays we lead more stressful lives. 

Whatever the reason, it’s important to know that a number of effective treatment options can help you deal with your anxiety. So if you feel your worries are getting out of control or your anxiety affects your everyday activities, it’s best to seek professional help.

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