Recently, Dispatches revealed that 68% of 16-30 year olds think they have had or are currently experiencing a mental health problem and also that there has been a 45% increase in referrals of young people to mental health services in the past two years.
The programme also found that in the last year, 55,210 under 18s were prescribed antidepressants. This is the biggest yearly increase in antidepressant prescriptions for the age group since 2015. Social support may also be lacking for millennials, as fewer people take part in community and religious based organisations.
Not only are depression and anxiety prevalent amongst young adults and teenagers, but there is a certain stigma when it comes to getting diagnosed and treated. Previous research from Smart TMS found that 37% of millennials have experienced symptoms of what they think is undiagnosed depression for many years and 27% of millennials have left a long-term mental health issue untreated over many years in order to avoid prescription drugs.
Gerard Barnes, CEO of Smart TMS, offers the following commentary:
“The research indicates that many millennials simply are not getting the same joy from previously loved hobbies, friends and even family. Alongside this lack of enjoyment, many people are reporting an increase in a desire to be away from other people and social situations. These are clear signs of depression and anxiety, which are often characterised by low self-esteem, an increase in substance abuse and a loss of the ability to carry out simple functions without overthinking.
At Smart TMS, we recognise that many Brits may be unaware that what they are feeling constitutes as depression and anxiety. As a result, they are not aware of the need to look after themselves and may not be seeking effective treatment for their conditions. More needs to be done to help people recognise symptoms of mental health conditions within their own behaviours and respond accordingly.”