These Are the Most Depressed U.S. States

Odds are depression has affected you or someone you know. After all, the diagnosis rate for major depression has increased by 33% since 2013. If you live in one of the following U.S. states, you’re more likely to be diagnosed with depression, according to data from Blue Cross Blue Shield. One tiny state has a huge impact on America’s depression rate (on page 10).

11. Iowa: 4.9% (tied)

Teens parading cattle during 4-H event at the Iowa State fair

Iowa State Fair | Spencer Platt/Getty Images

  • Women: 6.9%
  • Men: 3.1%

More than nine million commercially insured Americans are affected by depression, and Iowans certainly contribute, according to Blue Cross Blue Shield. Substantially impacting one’s overall health and wellness, this condition should not be taken lightly.

Next: Plains, prairies, and depression in this state

11. Kansas: 4.9% (tied)

kansas city bbq

At least Kansas has BBQ. | Steve Raichlen via Facebook

  • Women: 6.7%
  • Men: 3.1%

Known for its agriculture and salt-of-the-earth residents, Kansas has a high depression rate, especially among millennials (5%) and women. This supports national data showing that diagnoses of major depression rose an alarming 47% for millennials since 2013.

Next: Does Pacific Northwest weather contribute to depression here?

11. Washington: 4.9% (tied)

Washington coast

The Washington coast | mattalberts/iStock/Getty Images

  • Women: 6.7%
  • Men: 3.2%

Washington’s rising percentage of diagnoses lands it on this list. The Blue Cross Blue Shield study notes higher rates of major depression in the Pacific Northwest as well as various pockets throughout the South and Midwest.

Next: Washington’s neighbor

10. Oregon: 5%

people walking on Cannon Beach

Oregon’s coastline | NickJKelly/iStock/Getty Images

  • Women: 6.8%
  • Men: 3.2%

Does the weather contribute to the Pacific Northwest’s depression rates? It certainly seems like it. Oregon receives slightly more diagnoses of major depression than Washington.

Next: The “Show Me State” shows a lot of depression.

9. Missouri: 5.1% (tied)

St. Louis downtown at twilight

The famous St. Louis arch | F11Photo/iStock/Getty Images

  • Women: 6.9%
  • Men: 3.3%

Like other Americans, Missourians diagnosed with major depression are almost 30% less healthy on average than those who aren’t diagnosed with depression. This translates to a loss of nearly 10 years of healthy life overall.

Next: Women are much more depressed in this oil state.

9. North Dakota: 5.1% (tied)

oil industry North Dakota

Andrew Burton/Getty Images

  • Women: 7.3%
  • Men: 3%

Women are diagnosed with depression at much higher rates than men, and this rings true for North Dakota more than nearly all other states.

Next: The Granite State doesn’t take happiness for granted.

9. New Hampshire: 5.1% (tied)

New Hampshire State House

New Hampshire State House | Scott Eisen/Getty Images

  • Women: 6.8%
  • Men: 3.4%

Depression found a home in New Hampshire. Did you know the condition is the second most impactful on insured Americans’ overall health? The only more impactful health issue is hypertension, which is diagnosed nearly five times more than depression.

Next: Even the home of Ben & Jerry’s struggles.

8. Vermont: 5.2%

Cups of Ben & Jerry's

No amount of ice cream can cure depression. | Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

  • Women: 6.8%
  • Men: 3.5%

Ice cream can’t solve all woes, especially in Vermont, where depression is a major issue. “People diagnosed with major depression use healthcare services more than other commercially insured Americans,” according to Blue Cross Blue Shield.

Next: Agricultural states seem to struggle with depression.

7. Idaho: 5.3%

Welcome sign on the boarder to Idaho State

Home of the potatoes | oscity/ iStock/ Getty Images

  • Women: 7.2%
  • Men: 3.3%

Women have an extremely high rate of depression in Idaho compared to other states. This inclusion rounds out the Pacific Northwest states on this list.

Next: This historic state has a history of depression.

6. Connecticut: 5.4% (tied)

Westport, Connecticut

Westport, Connecticut | Jupiterimages/iStock/Getty Images

  • Women: 6.9%
  • Men: 3.8%

A rather high amount of Connecticut residents have received major depression diagnoses. They should keep an eye out for some of the lesser known symptoms that may masquerade as other issues.

Next: The Mountain State has mountains of depression.

6. West Virginia: 5.4% (tied)

Sunset at the New River Gorge Bridge in West Virginia

The New River Gorge Bridge in West Virginia | BackyardProduction/iStock/Getty Images

  • Women: 7.5%
  • Men: 3.2%

Another study found West Virginia to be the unhappiest state, taking into account depression rates and other factors. However, according to Blue Cross Blue Shield, the Mountain State ties for the sixth most depressed state.

Next: The Pilgrims first landed in this state.

5. Massachusetts: 5.5%

Boston, Massachusetts, USA

Boston, Massachusetts | Sean Pavone/iStock/Getty Images

  • Women: 7.2%
  • Men: 3.8%

Bay Staters must be informed about mental illnesses; they’re the fifth most depressed state after all. At least Massachusetts serves up delicious clam chowder.

Next: This friendly state gets sad and snowy in the winter.

4. Minnesota: 5.8%


The Land of 10,000 Lakes | AndreyKrav/iStock/Getty Images

  • Women: 8.1%
  • Men: 3.7%

Minnesota is notoriously snowy and cold in the winter, but does this contribute to its high depression rate? Possibly. One thing that can help boost wellness is exercising regularly. This could make a big difference to depressed Minnesotans.

Next: One of three states with a 6% diagnosis rate

3. Utah: 6%

Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah

The colorful hills of Utah | kojihirano/Getty Images

  • Women: 8%
  • Men: 4.1%

Although the diagnosis rate for women is noticeably high in Utah, the rate for men is high, too. Male Utahns should keep an eye out for certain symptoms of major depression.

Next: The second most depressed state in the U.S.

2. Maine: 6.1%

Portland Head Lighthouse in Fort Williams park

At least Maine residents have lobster rolls. | krblokhin/iStock/Getty Images

  • Women: 8.1%
  • Men: 4%

The diagnosis rate for females in Maine is alarmingly high, and it’s even more of a concern in the popular city of Portland, Maine, with the rate for women being 8.6%.

Next: The most depressed state in the U.S.

1. Rhode Island: 6.4%

East greenwich street scenes

East Greenwich, Rhode Island | alex grichenko/iStock/Getty Images

  • Women: 8.5%
  • Men: 4.1%

With the highest rate of depression diagnoses in the country, Rhode Island may need to rethink its healthcare services. People with major depression “are twice as likely to suffer from one or more other chronic diseases,” according to Blue Cross Blue Shield. They’re three times as likely to experience pain-related disorders. They’re also seven times as likely to have substance abuse issues compared to those who don’t have major depression.