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Ladies First: In honour of Women's Day in 2023, let's discuss women's mental health.


Ladies First: In honour of Women's Day in 2023, let's discuss women's mental health.



March brings International Women’s Day; we should take this time to look at women’s mental health at home. They say that the most prominent problem Canadian women encounter with their mental health is anxiety and depressive disorders. OCD, tokophobia (extreme fear of childbirth), and post-traumatic stress disorder are on the list.






Let’s look at the facts


The numbers speak volumes and it’s clear that there’s a link between women’s mental health to their exposure to violence and abuse. Check these stats out:



38% of women have said their mental health has improved since COVID began in Mid-March, 2020. This is reflected in the average clinical scores of anxiety and depression for women, which have been significantly rising since the pandemic's beginning in addition to measures of loneliness, stress, and worry.


Did you know that compared to men, women are more likely to express negative feelings regarding the COVID-19 pandemic? This includes many emotions including feeling stressed, worried, lonely, bored, sad, depressed, and hopeless.


By the numbers


Number crunching from a study World Health Organization conducted in 2017.



  • A male partner had abused 83% of female psychiatric in-patients physically and sexually.

  • Comparatively to men, who suffer from neuropsychiatric disorders at a rate of 29.3%, women suffer from neuropsychiatric disorders at nearly 41.9% disability.

  • Depression, organic brain syndromes, and dementias are the main mental health issues affecting older adults. The majority are female.

  • Of the 50 million people affected by violent conflicts, civil wars, disasters, and displacement, it is estimated that 80% are women and children.

  • Violence against women is prevalent throughout life at a rate between 16% and 50%.




COVID-19 had its effects


To better understand how COVID-19 affected women, this article offers data that has been de-identified. For more analysis, including broken-down data on employment, public safety, health, and other topics, go to the Gender, Diversity and Inclusion Statistics Hub.



30.5% of female participants compared to 24.0% of male participants said that the COVID-19 pandemic had made their lives "quite a bit" or "extremely" stressful. Results from the 2018 CCHS show a similar pattern, with 22.9% of women and 19.1% of men reporting that they experience moderate to high levels of stress in their daily lives. Despite the fact that data from crowdsourcing are not directly comparable to population projections from a sample survey like the CCHS, they do point to an increase in life stress among both women and men during the COVID-19 pandemic.






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