Upward Trend in Mental Health

Mindful Healing_Mental Health is Trending in a More Positive Direction

As a global culture we have come a long way from believing mental illness conditions were rooted in religion or superstition. Although records dating back to the 5th century suggest that Hippocrates was known to treat mental health conditions by identifying changes in environment or occupation, for centuries mental health was still marginalized and often unaddressed.

Support, Education, Advocacy, and Research

The way mental illness is portrayed and reported in culture and media has the greatest impact on influencing public opinion on mental health issues and perpetuating stigma. More recently, however, there has been a great deal of progress in the way pop culture media is building sensitivity for those who suffer from mental illness. Today, we see a trend towards de-stigmatizing mental health in all aspects of our lives. Public figures share their struggles with depression and anxiety. These include politicians, athletes, and actors. We are seeing more roles and stronger characters that serve the subject of mental health with more compassion and less stigma.

More Organizations and More Spending

While the prevalence of mental health conditions among adults has been relatively stable since 2008, we have seen an increase in organizations and federal spending. Cuts in 2019 will be the first year when funding has decreased. In fact, a 2020 bill to increase funding for National Institutes of Health (NIH), Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) was just approved in June 2019 which would also increase funding for grants such as the Community Mental Health Services Block Grant.

Not All Trends are Rosy

Despite the positive trend towards greater support and understanding for those who suffer from mental health issues, specific conditions like depression and ADHD are on the rise. Major depression continues to increase among women and young adults. The most concerning trend, however, is that conditions associated with mental health issues are worse among those who are uninsured or poor. The twelve-month prevalence was higher among uninsured adults (4.7%), compared to insured adults (3.9%), and far higher among those below 100% of the federal poverty level (6.8%) compared to those at or above the federal poverty level (3.5%).

You Don’t Need Insurance and Therapy is Affordable

Therapy and counseling are affordable, and you do not need insurance. In fact, at Mindful Healing Portland, LLC, we accept clients on a sliding scale based on your budget and needs. Part of our mission is to provide high-quality care without adding undue financial stress to our clients. We are currently accepting clients for our sliding scale rates.


If you live in Portland or the Portland area and want information depression,



Mental Health Issues Change from Culture to Culture

Mindful Healing_Mental Health Issues Differ from Culture to Culture_01


The classic definition of culture usually expresses a group of people based on multiple factors such as language, religion, cuisine, and region. Mental health disorders differ from culture to culture. Depression in the United States is different than depression in Japan, or Kenya, or China. Our own personal expectations of how to experience the world change based on our own unique cultures, including the cultures of our home. Thus, mental health reactions and issues can look different from person to person, even here within the city of Portland, Oregon.

Why Does it even Matter?

It matters because when we focus on mental health, we are focusing on personal goals in navigating and experiencing this life. Goals and values can significantly change from person to person, as well as having a unique perspective about the world. A multiculturally competent counselor will not impose their worldview and values onto you, but help you figure out how to achieve your own personal goals, which may look very different from the therapist. Therapists who do not take a multicultural lens may try to impose their own biases onto you (and even multiculturally aware ones can too) and as such it will not be effective therapy because it no longer is about your personal perceptions.

Another reason it is important to understand that mental health disorders and issues change from culture to culture is being able to understand them as stress reactions and not as a disease. Cancer, no matter where it is identified in the world, looks the same, whereas mental health issues change from culture to culture. This is a huge shift to fundamentally understanding mental health disorders, stress, and personal development.

Examples of Cultural Misunderstandings

The culture we grow up in teaches us about how to interact with the world. A prime example of an American value and cultural value is eye contact. Eye contact is expected in the U.S. as a method of politeness, and a lack of eye contact can convey dishonesty, shame, or autism-spectrum disorders. Conversely, in China direct eye contact is considered rude. If a counselor meets with a client whose parents are from China, the client may not make eye contact, not because they are shy or ashamed, but because that’s appropriate. A counselor who does not understand this may misdiagnose a client or not communicate well.

Does the Health Care System Address This?

The health care system is changing and has become better over the years addressing mental health, but it is still a part of a system that treats mental health as a disease. This impacts how mental health is perceived and also impacts how people seek help.

Coping with the Stigma

Fight against the stigma that is reinforced by your environment. Don’t fear the incorrect negative labels. Get treatment for your anxiety or depression. Stigma doesn’t only come from others; you have to fight your own stigmas. It is not uncommon for you to believe that your challenges are from a personal weakness and you should be able to manage without help. These are natural healthy instincts and all the more reason to seek help. You are not alone, and you don’t have to be alone. Also, do not identify yourself with your depression or anxiety. You, in fact all of us, are much more than the issues that challenge us. We are foremost; family, friends, lovers, companions, and confidants.


If you live in Portland or the Portland area and want information or help with Anxiety Disorder and/or Depression,