18 Jul Anxiety is More Common Than Ever in Young People
Anxiety in General
Everyone experiences anxiety from time to time. Although you can think of life without anxiety, a little bit of it is not necessarily a bad thing; it can even be helpful in some situations. For instance, it can be a normal response to a difficulty or an uncertain situation; a way through which the body tells you that there is a danger. Besides, a manageable amount of anxiety can motivate you to get things done. However, too much anxiety can cause harm and even stop you getting from the best out of your life. Severe or Chronic anxiety could be a sign that one is suffering from an anxiety disorder.
Prevalence of Anxiety Disorders
Anxiety disorders are mental illnesses associated with anxiety. They include panic disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety, and obsessive-compulsive disorder among others. Anxiety is the most common mental illness in the United States. About 90 million Americans experience an anxiety disorder in their lifetime. However, the sharp rise in anxiety among young people has become a worrying trend. To be precise, studies have shown that about 20 percent of American teenagers suffer from anxiety disorders. A study by the American College Health Association has shown that the cases of overwhelming anxiety among undergraduates went up from 50 percent to 62 percent between 2011 and 2016. Within the last 30 years, the proportion of freshmen overwhelmed by their responsibilities has gone up from 18 percent to 41 percent. This sharp rise in cases of anxiety among young people can be attributed to the following reasons;
One of the possible explanations that have been proposed has to do with the cultural changes in terms of how parents bring up their children in the modern world. Parents are now more protective and they are preventing their kids from going through uncomfortable challenges. Unfortunately, this has the effect of denying children the opportunity to emotionally prepare for trials they may have to face later in life. As a result, young people feel fragile and incapable of coping with difficulties and uncertainties.
The Pressure of Modern Life
Modern life is giving kids a lot of pressure. For instance, young people in the modern world are under immense pressure to succeed. From a very tender age, parents put them under pressure to excel academically. As they grow up, they face tremendous pressure from their peers; they look at how their peers are doing on the social media and wonder if they will ever get to such levels of “success.” The fact that they can escape boredom or loneliness through electronic devices only aggravates their situation. It disconnects them from their emotions and this increases their anxiety.
Overall, it is apparent that anxiety is one of the most common mental illnesses in the United States. It is also apparent the rate at which the proportion of young people suffering from anxiety is growing is unprecedented. This can be attributed to the cultural and technological transformation that societies have undergone in the last couple of decades. Children are under more pressure to succeed, and the modern parenting style doesn’t seem to prepare them for what the future holds. Nonetheless, anxiety is treatable through a combination of therapy and medication, and young people suffering from it should seek professional assistance.