Every year, 12 000 youths commit suicide, making it the second-largest cause of death among people aged 15 to 24. According to the World Health Organization, approximately 20% of the world’s adolescents suffer from mental diseases or issues, and almost half of mental health problems develop before the age of 14. Every day, mental illnesses and addiction lead to a large number of suicides throughout the world, and it should be broadly addressed in terms of awareness and treatment.
Over a period of time, mental health has seen significant change. There have been several changes, including the integration of community support to help with long term treatment plans, and the increased use of talk therapies. They’ve all had a significant influence on patients and mental health treatments. Our emotional, psychological, and social well-being all contribute to our mental health. It has an impact on how we think, feel, and act. It also influences how we deal with stress, interact with people, and make decisions. One significant development has been a
shift in societal views. People are becoming more understanding of mental health concerns and more supportive of those who suffer from them. They are more aware of prevalent mental illnesses for example depression and anxiety just to name a few, and are more likely to seek treatment from health professionals.
Unfortunately, mental health across various groups like adolescents and youths, lack awareness. Young people’s mental health is just as vital as their physical health to grow up to be self-sufficient and confident adults. Teenage mental health is an important element of healthy adolescent development because it helps young people develop positive social, emotional, intellectual, and communication skills and behaviors. It also builds the groundwork for future mental health and well-being.
Youth mental health problems are more than just feeling down and they can have a wide-ranging influence on a teen/young person’s life. Youth with poor mental health may suffer academically, as well as with decision making and their health. Some warnings signs of a youth’s mental health declining are noticeable changes in eating habits, difficulty concentrating, losing weight, difficulty sleeping and withdrawing from social interactions. Youth mental health issues can lead to drug use, experiencing violence and high-risk sexual behaviors that can lead to HIV, STDs, and unwanted pregnancy, because many health behaviors and habits are formed throughout adolescence and will persist into adulthood, it is critical to assist adolescents in developing good mental health.
Having a collaborative effort among government ministries such as Health, Education, and National Mobilization in comprehensive, integrated, evidence-based programs for young people’s mental health is critical. Providing psycho-education to adolescents and young adults about self-care, mental health care, and programs that teach peers, parents, and instructors how to assist their friends, children, and pupils is fundamental. Moreover, interventions for mental health promotion and prevention, attempt to improve an individual’s ability to control emotions, improve alternatives to risk-taking behaviors, increase resilience for dealing with challenging events and adversity, and foster supportive social contexts. Developed programs need to be multi-level and inclusive of a holistic approach; for example, the media, health or social care settings, schools, and/or the community – as well as a variety of techniques to reach teenagers, particularly the most vulnerable.
Ms. Jomelia Douglas
BSc in Psychology