Youth Mental Health
A report recently released from Tuolumne County Public Health shows suicide as the leading cause of death for youth ages 10-19 old in the county. Over 50% of Tuolumne County high school juniors experience chronic sadness or hopelessness. Youth mental health in the United States is in a state of decline. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, one in five children ages 13 to 18 experiences a mental health disorder each year. And, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, suicide is the second leading cause of death among people ages 10 to 24.
“There are a number of factors that contribute to the decline in youth mental health, including:
- Increased stress levels. Youth today are facing more stress than ever before, from academic pressure to social media use to economic instability. This can lead to feelings of anxiety, depression, and stress.
- Lack of access to mental health care. Even if youth are aware of their mental health problems, they may not have access to affordable or quality mental health care. This is especially true in rural areas and low-income communities.
- Stigma. There is still a lot of stigma surrounding mental health issues, which can prevent youth from seeking help. Youth may be afraid of being judged or labeled if they talk about their mental health problems.
The decline in youth mental health is a serious problem that needs to be addressed. There are a number of things that can be done to help improve youth mental health, including:
- Increase awareness of mental health issues. We need to raise awareness of mental health issues among youth, parents, and educators. This will help to reduce stigma and encourage people to seek help.
- Improve access to mental health care. We need to make sure that all youth have access to affordable and quality mental health care. This includes expanding access to school-based mental health services and training more mental health professionals.
- Reduce stress levels. We need to find ways to reduce stress levels for youth. This could include providing more support for students in school, teaching coping skills, and promoting healthy lifestyles.
The decline in youth mental health is a serious problem, but it is one that can be solved. By working together, we can create a world where all youth have the opportunity to reach their full potential.
In addition to the above, here are some specific things that you can do to help improve youth mental health:
- Talk to your children about mental health. Let them know that it’s okay to not be okay and that there are people who can help if they’re struggling.
- Be a good role model. Show your children how to cope with stress in a healthy way.
- Encourage your children to get involved in activities that they enjoy. This can help to reduce stress and improve their mental health.
- If you’re concerned about your child’s mental health, talk to their doctor or a mental health professional. Early intervention is key to treating mental health problems.”