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Many of our young adults are experiencing high levels of stress, anxiety, depression, and mental illness, more so than any other generation. Many are turning to self- medicating, because they are not finding adequate support. Drug overdoses have tripled in some areas of NJ, the same can be said in Vermont, Colorado and many other states across the Country.  I’ve found some articles and statistics to share with you, this information is alarming, but we need to be aware of what is happening and begin to find ways to change a flawed system.

Young adults in the USA find it particularly hard to manage their stress and get the health care that meets their needs, says a new American Psychological Association survey“Stress in America: Missing the Health Care Connection”.

The survey found that adults aged from 18 to 33 years, also known as “Millennials”, have an average stress level of 5.4 on a 10-point scale, compared to the national average of 4.9.

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In fact, the survey found that a significant proportion of Americans feel there is a gap between what they want from their health care system and what it actually delivers. The Harris Interactive survey involved 2,020 American adults who were asked questions in August 2012. The report states that people are not getting what they require from their health care providers to address lifestyle and behavior changes to improve their overall health and to manage stress.

According to Heidi Oran “this past February a study was released confirming what Millennials already knew – that compared to other generations, we are the most stressed out cohort. The mounds of debt post-College and the impossible job market are just a couple of examples of how our educational and financial institutions are failing us. The academic pressure begins at a young age and has become so common that College websites have began to feature helpful tips on how to help you cope. Whether Baby Boomers and members of Generation X like it or not, the truth is that Millennials have been promised a world that doesn’t exist, and many of us are ill-prepared for this reality. Stress has been proven to lead to anxiety and depression – identifiable mental illnesses and factors which can then lead to suicide.”

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Canadian post-secondary students feel stressed, overwhelmed, lonely and some have even considered suicide in the past year, a new study released Monday suggested. More than 30,000 students were surveyed for the report, which sheds light on mental health and other health issues faced by students at Canada’s colleges and universities. Some of the troubling findings of the report had to do with the level of stress and anxiety students feel when dealing with their academic careers. Almost 90 per cent of students said that they felt overwhelmed by all they had to do in the past year, while more than 50 per cent said they felt hopeless and 63 per cent said they felt very lonely. The report also painted a grim picture on the issue of suicide, with 9.5 per cent of students saying they had seriously considered taking their own lives in the past year, while 1.3 per cent said they had attempted suicide.

Dr. Su-Ting Teo, director of student health and wellness at Toronto’s Ryerson University, said some health issues students face are often overlooked. “What is surprising is of course the burden of mental health issues,” she said in an interview. “For some of us that have done (the survey) in previous years, there is some signs of an increase in that, so that’s a bit alarming.”

Too often, parents are left with dead-end searches and stressful home environments. Something needs to change and soon. I think we are all tired of hearing reports of loss from another suicide or overdose from drugs. I was thinking of possible things we could do, such as, forming “parents of young adult support groups” in local churches, writing letters to congress and government leaders, mentoring young adults in our local area and lastly praying for them. Perhaps, you can come up with others and together we can begin to make a difference. I’ve included some article links below for those interested in learning more.

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A good article on some of their struggles

Getting to know the millennial generation better

Information on Depression


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