In the first half of 2021, nearly 20% of 15-24-year-olds reported often feeling depressed, according to a UNICEF/Gallup survey of young people across 21 countries, The Guardian reports.
Country by country:
- Almost a third of young people surveyed in Cameroon said they often felt depressed or had little interest in doing things
- 1 in 5 in the UK reported the same
- 1 in 10 in Ethiopia and Japan said so as well
Driving the burden: COVID-19’s disruption to routines, education, and recreation—plus worries about family income and health—has left many young people feeling afraid, angry, and concerned for their future.
But unaddressed mental health issues weighed on the young well before the pandemic lockdowns brought on new challenges.
- An estimated 13% of 10-19-year-olds live with a diagnosed mental disorder globally
- 1 child dies every 11 minutes from suicide
And yet: Just 2% of government health budgets are allocated to mental health spending globally, the report highlights.
Adults impacted, too: Another study published yesterday in The Lancet Regional Health found that pandemic stressors—and low household income—drove rising prevalence of depressive symptoms, which persisted in US adults from 27.8% in March-April 2020, to 32.8% in March-April 2021.
Related: In research first, jolts from a customized brain implant provided immediate relief to a severely depressed patient, scientists say – STAT