Nearly one in five U.S. adults live with a mental illness (52.9 million in 2020).* Numerous clinical studies on mental illness have demonstrated a strong genetic correlation. For those with family members that have mental illness, the likelihood of developing mental illness increases. Diagnosis such as autism, ADHD, bipolar disorder, major depressive disorder, and others have been directly linked to specific gene variations. Additionally, deletions, duplications, and gene-environment correlations add to the expression of psychiatric disorders.
In a study conducted by Paychex, 56% of the employees in the survey rated their company’s mental-health benefits as either “fair” or “poor.”
In a recent study conducted by Paychex, 56% of employees rated their company’s mental health benefits as either “fair” or “poor.” In 2021, new findings indicate that individuals with exposure to adverse childhood experiences have a higher genetic predisposition toward bipolar disorder. Furthering the need for improved mental health benefits.
Given the linkages between genetics and mental illness, specifically particular conditions where specific genes might carry markers for more than one mental illness, coupling genomics with clinical support brings the best of care available for employees. Whether it’s the triggering of genes by external experiences (ex. childhood trauma, COVID) or conditions like addiction to drugs or alcohol, physical or emotional abuse, stressful life events such as divorce, family illness, or death; additional support is necessary. Understanding the genetics of mental illness can, not only, further the precise diagnosis but also, assist the clinician in prescribing the most appropriate medications.
The CACNA1C and ANK3 genes have been found to play a key role in the development of bipolar disorder in Latin American populations. Among those with European descent, the CACNA1C gene is associated with bipolar disorder, depression, and schizophrenia. CACNA1C plays an important role in brain function because it further regulates brain activity that contributes to cognition, emotion, memory, and attention. However, just because you inherit a psychiatric disease gene variant, doesn’t mean that you will develop mental illness. Proactive mental health management can help better prepare and/or prevent the onset of mental illness.
WithHealth, a genomics-based healthcare provider, has Precision Mental Health benefits to better manage and care for employees. To learn how you can improve the mental health of your employees by providing them with Precision Care, please visit www.withhealth.com