“Today’s world is going crazy” is something you’d expect to hear from your neighbor’s crocheting-obsessed grandma but the 11 countries with the highest mental illness rates in the world will show you that there might be a scary bit of truth in that claim. Mental illness doesn’t necessarily have to be something as radical as full-blown, hallucination-filled bouts of paranoid schizophrenia. Clinical depression, for example – dubbed a silent killer is also a mental illness. Anxiety disorders of all shapes and colors also make the cut. If you are interested in degenerative mental disorders, give our list of the 11 countries with the highest dementia rates a look. The world of mental disorders is both extremely frightening and fascinating, depending on which side of the patient-doctor relationship you are on.
While their spreading and complexity increase nowadays, mental disorders have been a part of the human life since the developing of reason and critical thinking. The earliest known civilizations have observed and attempted treating various conditions such as “melancholia”, hysteria and many more. A prominent breakthrough of sorts for its time was observed in ancient Greece and certain kingdoms in the, then highly developed, Islamic world. The Greek developed the basis of medicine for centuries ahead called “humorism” which was a theory that the body is made of four substances, dubbed humors, which have to be in balance for a person to have a healthy body and mind. Throughout the whole duration of the middle ages, mental illness was attributed to humoral imbalance, the divine, diabolical, supernatural and whatnot, while the more developed explanations for such behaviors and their cause were still in the far future.
It wasn’t until the late nineteenth and early twentieth century that the term psychiatry was coined and the unexplainable disorders of the mind clashed with science. Along the way many misconceptions were made and many radical theories and treatments saw the light of day. However many of them, with psychiatry being still in its infancy, were more damaging than helpful. Nowadays anyone with the slightest bump in their mindset is prescribed a handful of pills but are they really necessary in all the cases? Let’s look at some countries where the answer might be “yes”.