Thursday, January 18, 2024

Healthy Minds Poll Provides Insight Into Americans’ Anxieties Over Past Year

Over the past year, U.S. adults reported the greatest anxiety about inflation, a recession, and gun violence, according to analysis of monthly data collected from APA’s Healthy Minds Poll in 2023.

The poll is conducted each month throughout the year to track mental health and anxiety among U.S. adults. The most recent poll was fielded by Morning Consult from December 2 to 4 among 2,202 adults.

According to the December poll, many adults (38%) reported being anxious about their mental health, which has been a consistent finding over the past year. Forty-four percent of adults said they expect to experience the same level of stress at the start of 2024 as they did at the start of 2023, while a quarter of respondents expect to experience more stress. Further, 54% of respondents reported feeling anxious about the uncertainty of the next year.

The December poll also asked about anxiety about international conflicts, such as the Russia-Ukraine war, and inflation. Anxiety about these issues has been consistent all year. Sixty-seven percent of respondents reported being somewhat or very anxious about current events, while 80% expressed anxiety about inflation. Additionally, 72% of respondents expressed anxiety about a recession and 70% of respondents expressed anxiety about gun violence.

Additional findings include the following:

  • Respondents expressed anxiety over hate speech and hate crimes throughout the year, with 64% reporting such anxiety in December.
  • Concern about the future of reproductive rights reached 54% in December.
  • 58% of respondents reported being very or somewhat anxious over artificial intelligence in December. This concern has stayed relatively unchanged since August, when it was 55%.
  • 43% reported being very or somewhat anxious about the COVID-19 pandemic, which has consistently been the topic on which respondents have been the least anxious over the past year.

For more information, see the Psychiatric News Alert “More Than 1 in 4 U.S. Adults Plans to Make Mental Health a Priority in 2024.”

(Image: Getty Images/iStock/FG Trade)

Don't miss out! To learn about newly posted articles in Psychiatric News, please sign up here.


The content of Psychiatric News does not necessarily reflect the views of APA or the editors. Unless so stated, neither Psychiatric News nor APA guarantees, warrants, or endorses information or advertising in this newspaper. Clinical opinions are not peer reviewed and thus should be independently verified.