Almost 5 million California adults say they could use help with a mental or emotional problem, according to a survey released Wednesday by researchers at UCLA. About 1 million of them meet the criteria for "serious psychological distress."
However, only one in three people who perceive a need for mental health services or are in serious distress have seen a professional for treatment, the survey found.
The survey was conducted among more than 44,000 adults as part of the 2005 California Health Interview Survey, administered through the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research. Since the survey was conducted, the recession probably has contributed to worsening mental health for even more people, said the lead author of the study, David Grant.