National Invisible Chronic Illness Awareness Week is September 9-15, 2013. Find out how you can help increase awareness and make “invisible” illness more visible to others: http://invisibleillnessweek.com/.
25 Chronic Illness Facts
1. Nearly 1 in 2 people (over 100 million people) have a chronic condition in the USA.
2. About 96% of illnesses are “invisible” with no visible signs of illness.
3. The significance of one’s faith has shown to help one handle a stressful medical event better.
4. Sadly, the divorce rate among the chronically ill is over 75%.
5. About 60% of people with chronic illness are young, between the ages of 18-64.
6. By 2020, about 157 million Americans will be afflicted by chronic illnesses.
7. About 90% of seniors have at least one chronic disease and 77% have two or more chronic diseases.
8. Depression is 15-20% higher for the chronically ill than for the average person.
9. Sadly, physical illness or uncontrollable physical pain are major factors in up to 70% of suicides.
10. About one in four adults suffer from a diagnosable mental disorder each year.
11. Invisible illness includes autism, bulimia, migraine pain, arthritis, bi-polar disorder, and depression, etc.
12. More people need pain treatment than those with cancer, heart disease, stroke, and diabetes combined.
13. Less than two hours is spent on pain management in most medical school curriculum.
14. Most people prefer illness management advice from health professionals before their spouse.
15. About 19 million people who are severely disabled do not use a wheelchair, cane, crutches, or walker.
16. About 78% of US health care dollars are spent on people with chronic conditions.
17. Patients with a deep faith recover faster from depression, even when illness doesn’t improve.
18. Faith reduces stress, loneliness, pain, and anxiety according to American Cancer Society.
19. Over half of the chronically ill say the worst thing someone can say is “you look great.”
20. About 34% of respondents said the person closest to them with a chronic illness is a parent.
21. Most medical residents leave medical school believing that 80% of patients are addicts seeking drugs.
22. Over 75% of patients with depression complain of physical pains.
23. The number of people in the US over 65 years old will double in the next 25 years to 20% of Americans, which will increase chronic illness numbers.
24. Depression can predispose patients to chronic pain due to the chemical imbalance it creates.
25. Faith gives people with health challenges peace of mind and will to live.