It has been found in the UK that one in four girls will have experienced depression by 14 and 18% will have experienced emotional problems.

In this day and age, there is no doubt that rates of reported mental health issues have significantly increased among teenagers. The evolving society that we live in has had a massive impact on young people throughout the country, let alone the world. Materialistic lifestyles, unattainable idealistic dreams and successes fed to the younger generation through social media results in frustrating and stressful situations for the youth who are easily influenced.

Whilst discussing mental health amongst teenagers with friends who attend Saint Olaves, Louis Dekany, 15, added “I believe a lot of our problems are rooted in social media and technology, and the meaning behind our messages is blocked out. We don’t really talk face to face anymore, and we can’t reach for help to each other properly like this.”

Developing electronic communications are becoming faster and more efficient, yet at the same time obscure meaning and context that would be present in a natural real-life conversation. Subconsciously because of this, teenagers who make up a massive demographic of users of online message services become less willing to open up about their true and inner feelings, for they can be misread, ignored, and at worst for a teenager, alter how people view them.

The deteriorating quality of communications between youngsters has undoubtedly led to many privatising their problems, and to mimic the unscratched and worriless celebrities and influencers that make up the face of thousands of advertisements.

Not only this, but academic pressures have also been increasing through the years. Subject courses for those studying for their GCSEs have reached peak levels of difficulty, testing not only huge amounts of knowledge, but also a focus on applying knowledge to real situations which has been brought with the establishment of the new 9-1 grading system. The time and effort required to achieve ideal grades by the young has been increasing and balancing this with a healthy social life has become a painstaking task to circumvent.

However, there is hope for the youth that will become the driving force of the country. With the national mental health awareness day having just passed, efforts to give options for struggling teenagers through charities and counselling organisations such as YoungMinds are becoming more prevalent and apparent, so that no teenager has to bottle up what they feel, and every teenager can overcome obstacles that growing up throws at them.

By Derin Burke.

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