Table 57Serious psychological distress in the past 30 days among adults 18 years of age and over, by selected characteristics: United States, average annual, selected years 1997–1998 through 2008–2009

[Data are based on household interviews of a sample of the civilian noninstitutionalized population]

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Percent of persons with serious psychological distress 1
18 years and over, age-adjusted 2,
18 years and over, crude
18–44 years2.
 18–24 years2.
 25–44 years3.
45–64 years3.
 45–54 years3.
 55–64 years3.
65 years and over3.
 65–74 years2.
 75 years and over3.
White only3.
Black or African American only4.
American Indian or Alaska7.8*7.28.1*3.5**3.8
Asian only2.0*1.4*1.81.7*1.0*1.1
Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander only- - -*****
2 or more races- - -*4.9
Hispanic origin and race 2,4
Hispanic or Latino5.
Not Hispanic or Latino3.
 White only2.
 Black or African American only3.
Percent of poverty level 2,5
Below 100%
400% or more1.
Hispanic origin and race and percent of poverty level2,4,5
Hispanic or Latino:
 Below 100%
 400% or more*2.3**1.9*1.6*1.0
Not Hispanic or Latino:
 White only:
  Below 100%
  400% or more1.
 Black or African American only:
  Below 100%
  400% or more**1.0****
Geographic region 2
Location of residence 2
Within MSA
Outside MSA

Estimates are considered unreliable. Data preceded by an asterisk have a relative standard error (RSE) of 20%–30%. Data not shown have an RSE greater than 30%.

- - -

Data not available.


Serious psychological distress is measured by a six-question scale that asks respondents how often they experienced each of six symptoms of psychological distress in the past 30 days. See Appendix II, Serious psychological distress.


Estimates are age-adjusted to the year 2000 standard population using five age groups: 18–44 years, 45–54 years, 55–64 years, 65–74 years, and 75 years and over. See Appendix II, Age adjustment.


Includes all other races not shown separately.


The race groups, white, black, American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian, Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander, and 2 or more races, include persons of Hispanic and non-Hispanic origin. Persons of Hispanic origin may be of any race. Starting with 1999 data, race-specific estimates are tabulated according to the 1997 Revisions to the Standards for the Classification of Federal Data on Race and Ethnicity and are not strictly comparable with estimates for earlier years. The five single-race categories plus multiple-race categories shown in the table conform to the 1997 Standards. Starting with 1999 data, race-specific estimates are for persons who reported only one racial group; the category 2 or more races includes persons who reported more than one racial group. Prior to 1999, data were tabulated according to the 1977 Standards with four racial groups and the Asian only category included Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander. Estimates for single-race categories prior to 1999 included persons who reported one race or, if they reported more than one race, identified one race as best representing their race. Starting with 2003 data, race responses of other race and unspecified multiple race were treated as missing, and then race was imputed if these were the only race responses. Almost all persons with a race response of other race were of Hispanic origin. See Appendix II, Hispanic origin; Race.


Percent of poverty level is based on family income and family size and composition using U.S. Census Bureau poverty thresholds. Missing family income data were imputed for 1997 and beyond. See Appendix II, Family income; Poverty; Table VII.


MSA is metropolitan statistical area. Starting with 2006–2007 data (shown in spreadsheet), MSA status is determined using 2000 census data and the 2000 standards for defining MSAs. For data prior to 2006, see Appendix II, Metropolitan statistical area (MSA) for the applicable standards.

NOTES: Standard errors for selected years are available in the spreadsheet version of this table. Available from: http://www​ Data for additional years are available. See Appendix III.

SOURCE: CDC/NCHS, National Health Interview Survey, family core questionnaire.

From: Trend Tables

Cover of Health, United States, 2010
Health, United States, 2010: With Special Feature on Death and Dying.
National Center for Health Statistics (US).
Hyattsville (MD): National Center for Health Statistics (US); 2011 Feb.

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