"1 of 5 kids between the age of 3 and 18 have a diagnosable mental disorder" 

Mental Health 

Mental health is a key component in a child’s healthy development; children need to be healthy in order to learn, grow, and live productive lives. Mental health problems occur commonly among today’s youth and begin at a young age. 

Child and Youth Mental Health Statistics

General Children Mental Health Statistics:

  • One in five children from 3 to 18 have a diagnosable mental disorder. 
  • One in 10 youth have serious mental health problems that are severe enough to impair how they function at home, in school, and/ or in the community. 
  • The onset of major mental illness may occur as early as 7 to 11 years old. 
  • Roughly half of all lifetime mental health disorders start within the teenage years. 

Low Income Families:

  • Twenty-one percent of children and youth aged 6 to 17 have mental health problems. 
  • Fifty-seven percent of children with mental health problems come from households living at or below the federal poverty level.  

Military Families:

  • Children and youth in military families tend to have higher rates of mental health problems than those in the general population, and those mental health problems are especially pronounced during a parent’s deployment.
  • Thirty-two percent of children of military families scored as “high risk” for child psychosocial morbidity, 2.5 times the national average.
  • There is a higher prevalence of emotional and behavioral difficulties in youth aged 11 to 17 in military families compared to the general population. 
  • During a parent’s deployment, children exhibit behavior changes including changes in school performance, lashing out in anger, disrespecting authority figures, and symptoms of depression.