We have tried to break down this problematic development, and highlight the reasons why millennials are more anxious and stressed.
Even though millennials are the most informed generation about mental health, they are the ones who are overwhelmingly lonely, burned out and depressed.
Their state of mental health has been significantly falling in recent years. The statistical data gathered by experts is not painting a pretty picture. This generation is most affected by profound despair.
There are many socio-cultural factors contributing to this epidemic of depression. This is mainly due to money stress and loneliness.
Millennials are highly suspicious and anxious in this uncertain economy and the fragile job market. They are asked to work overtime, yet they are not assured of stagnant wages.
This is making the millennial generation the most burned out. This unfortunate situation has also led to many quitting their jobs for the concern over their mental health.
However, they are the first generation who are a bit more proactive in attending a therapy session than the previous generations.
This is a step in the right direction, as this happens more and more, the stigma surrounding mental health is reduced.
Here are a few reasons that have played a huge part in increasing the depression rates among this young population.
Deaths of Despair
The most prominent symptom identified by the professional practitioners is a low mood, accompanied by constant sadness, also with a sense of despair.
A prominent organization has published a shocking report on millennial mental health. It analysed the data gathered from millions of American millennials.
It has revealed that depression particularly has the highest prevalence among the considered demographic.
One problematic phenomenon observed among them is known as ‘deaths of despair’. These are deaths related to overuse or increased dependency on drugs and alcohol.
Deaths like these have steeply increased in the last 10 years. Younger Americans are the most affected by this.
According to a shocking report published, thousands of young Americans have lost their lives in the last few years, mostly because of a drug overdose.
Many investigative reports have found reasons why this is a reality. Young adults are identified to be most inclined to participate in risky activities.
Stress among millennials is at high levels. Many are associated with correctional facilities.
The Other Connecting Link
‘Deaths of despair’ are also influenced by other structural factors. It’s majorly the myriad financial problems that are acting as a huge burden on the anxious millennials’ shoulders.
They are severely affected by student loan debt. They have to stretch too thin to afford healthcare and childcare. The expensive housing market has eliminated their hope for a better life.
Studies have repeatedly found a correlation between indebted people and mental health issues.
The likelihood of suffering from a mental health disorder is three times higher among those with unsecured debt. Another shocking revelation is, they are also most likely to commit suicide.
Not Everyone Can Afford a Proper Treatment
While millennials are aware of the importance of attending therapy. Not many with major depression seek treatment. This is because of the rising healthcare costs.
Healthcare expense is one of the four major costs that is financially draining the millennials.
During the 1960s, people spent $146 on average on annual health insurance. Now, it has hit $10,345.
Even when adjusted for inflation, that’s a whopping nine-fold increase. The costs are expected to further increase, it is estimated that they may touch $15,000 in the coming years.
Many millennials are declining medical and dental treatment because it is too costly for them.
Loneliness on the Rise
Millennials lack a solid social connection. They lack people whom they completely trust to share their insecurities and concerns.
They have the least social support compared to other people. They delay getting married and are adrift from the political or religious connection.
Many experts in the field have called them the loneliest generation, based on many studies and polls that were conducted.
They have found out that millennials were more likely to feel lonely for extended periods, compared to previous generations.
Many millennials admit that they have no acquaintances, friends or someone they completely trust to share something personal.
In a Constant State of Burnout
This mental state of burnout has been rising at an alarming rate for the last few years. The World Health Organization clearly classifies burnout as a syndrome, therefore it is medically legitimized.
This problem has now become a part of today’s workplace everywhere. The trends contributing to its rise are the increased workload, limited staff and resources, and painful long hours.
Along with being the loneliest generation, millennials are also the burnt-out generation.
This problem can be traced back to how the millennials had their upbringing, the economic environment in which they grew up, social media and its impact, and the anxiety for even performing simple tasks.
Millennials are also the ‘Therapy Generation’
There are many reasons why millennials are the most anxious. Because of the endurance and struggle against their mental health issues, millennials are also taking an important step to destigmatizing therapy.
This is a positive development, they are more cognizant and responsible regarding their mental health. This awareness is essential to address and treat the problem.
They are raised by parents, who themselves some of them went to therapy. This has made them turn to therapy sooner.
There are promising reports with data, showing the increase in college students seeking help for their mental health.
Millennials view therapy as a form of self-improvement. This is because they inherently desire to be perfect and optimized. They seek help when their expectations in life falter.
If you or someone you know is suffering from mild or severe identifiable symptoms of depression, Bloom Health Centers are always here to help you.
You can talk to professionals, and get confidential support in improving your emotional wellness.