Number of Turkish psychological patients triples in four years: Ministry
ANKARAThe number of Turkish citizens who have applied to undergo psychological treatment tripled between 2009 and 2013, official figures have shown.
Around 3 million people went to the doctor for psychological aid in 2009, with this figure rose to over 9 million in 2013, the Health Ministry said in a response to a parliamentary question.
Numbers have particularly soared in Istanbul, almost multiplying by six. In 2009 there were 262,364 who requested psychological help in Istanbul province, while in 2013 this number was 1,498,340.
The capital, Ankara, is also among the cities that have faced high increases in the number of psychological patients. Just over 70,000 people were undergoing psychological treatment in 2009 – a small number for Turkey’s second most populated city, when compared to smaller cities. However, the figure jumped to over 487,000 in 2010.
“Uncertainty about the future is experienced more commonly during crises. People worry about what can happen to them or their children. We know anxiety and depression double or triple during those periods, as well as suicide attempts,” said Burhanettin Kaya, a representative from the Turkish Psychiatry Association.
Kaya also noted that an increasing number of cases were linked to domestic violence.
“Murders of women have increased by about 1,400 percent, increasing with the number of women confined at home and facing violence. Many young women face a lot of pressure at home. Early marriages are a very important factor as well,” he added.