Why do Utahns report being both the happiest and most depressed?

by | Sep. 23, 2009

News from Utah

Researchers at Utah Valley University are trying to determine why Utahns report being both the happiest and most depressed people in America.

Jack Jensen, director of mental-health services at UVU, and Cameron John, associate professor of psychology, said they've received a government grant to study what unique factors are at play in the Beehive State, as Utah has recently ranked at the top of the scale nationally on rates of both personal well-being and depression.

"How can they both be true?" Jensen asked dozens of students Wednesday, during an Ethics Awareness Week presentation on campus. He said the school experienced a spike of known suicides back in 2003, when eight students took their own lives, but hasn't seen anything like it since.

In a 2008 Gallup Poll, Utah ranked No. 1 in the "well-being" of its residents, yet the Rocky Mountain states all register more suicides per hundred thousand than any other region in the nation. Utah ranked seventh-highest in 2008.

Read the rest of this story at deseretnews.com
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