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Mental Health and the Pandemic: How Young Adults Are Suffering and Suicidal

Lauren Gamble

Posted on March 10 2021

The pressure of online school, social activities and job availability is, according to experts, leading to an increase of mental health issues, especially in the young adult population. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) analyzed survey responses from around 5,000 adults last June, finding that 1 in 4 participants age 18-24 had considered suicide within the past month. Additionally, nearly 1 in 4 responded that they had started using substances or increased their use of substances because of the pandemic.


Shockingly, about 75% of respondents in the 18-24 age group said they had experienced one or more “adverse mental or behavioral health symptoms.” This is in great contrast to the responses of those surveyed at age 65 or older, of which 2% said they had considered suicide and 3% said they had started or increased substance use. Around 15% denoted adverse mental health symptoms. 


According to experts, the mental health of young people has been trending towards isolation, loneliness and depression, especially for young people who are isolated or are in transitional phases due to schooling or other circumstances. According to an October report by the American Psychological Association, the age demographic suffering most effects of the pandemic are young people ages 13-23 years old. Experts note that the structure in our day to day routines offer meaning. Without these daily routines, we may begin to feel like life has little meaning. Also, people who are depressed or lonely may become out of touch with exercise and other self-care routines that have supported a balanced lifestyle. This can lead to a vicious disconnection between the mind and body, and a downward spiral of energy. 


Practices that can be done at home can begin to bring balance back to the lives of young people, and all those who are suffering. Joining online groups can bring socialization back, and yoga classes, breathwork, laughter therapy, and other offerings are a way for people to gather together in the online forum and support one another. Mental health professionals also offer online sessions, via video chat or even through texting. Establishing access for these services is essential in this time of altered connection. 

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