Utahns aren't as depressed as we thought, according to a new study by the Utah Department of Health. About five percent of Utah women and three percent of men are depressed, making Utah the 21st most depressed state, the study says. Previously, the advocacy group Mental Health America had found a depression rate of ten percent in Utah and ranked it as the most depressed state in the nation.Critics of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints have argued that pressure on church members to be perfect causes depression. However, people with strong ties to religion are happier, according to Jonathan Haidt, Professor of Psychology at the University of Virginia and author of The Happiness Hypothesis.
Even with the new, lower rate of depression, the UDOH study still finds that 75,000 adults in Utah are depressed. That's far too many. Depression is a debilitating condition that can be fatal. About.com's depression guidesite has lots of good information on depression, including non-pharmaceutical ways to cope and what to do when a loved one is suffering.Photo courtesy of the Salt Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau