Teens Are More Anxious, Depressed and Suicidal Today. Why?
It’s a fact. Teenagers today are more anxious and depressed than ever, and suicides are skyrocketing. According to Vox, in 2017, 6,241 suicide deaths ocurred in ages 15-24.
Overall, around 16 percent of adolescents, the CDC reports, consider suicide in a given year. “That’s an epidemic,” says Mitch Prinstein, the director of clinical psychology at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. And the craziest thing is that the experts do not really understand what has been causing this dramatic increase in mental illness in young people.
There is no doubt about it that our society has dramatically evolved in the past 10 years. Our children are under more pressure than ever to perform, not only at school, but on social media, trying to get the most likes or the biggest clout. There is pressure to be better, prettier, skinnier, have more followers and be more popular than ever before. And the feedback is instant and ruthless, social media does not discriminate when it comes to massive groups of people tearing someone completely apart. This kind of pressure is difficult if impossible to handle for most adults, imagine under-developed children and teenagers.
So, what do we have to do to protect our children? How do we stop this epidemic? Ideas have been thrown around, but no one truly knows. We can only hope that our society is able to adapt and successfully face the challenges that technology has thrown at us, and hopefully we can prevent more children from feeling hopeless and dying at at the hands of their own mental suffering.