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GEN Z’S: THE MOST DEPRESSED GENERATION

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Before you continue reading this, I would like to give you a trigger warning, this is a very sensitive topic. If you or someone you know is struggling with depression or has had thoughts of harming themselves or taking their own life, get help. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-8255) provides 24/7, free, confidential support for people in distress, as well as best practices for professionals and resources to aid in prevention and crises.

This topic is particularly hard to talk about but it must be addressed, understood, and prevented. It came to my attention to find out that Gen Z’s is seeing a mental health crisis worse than that faced by millennials, and they exhibit higher rates of suicide since studies began in 1950.

According to data taken from the United Health Foundation, Deaths of despair were the second leading cause of death among teens and young adults. From 2014 to 2019, suicide rates increased near to 60%, and depression diagnoses have seen a 47% increase.

Suicide is now, the second-leading cause of death of the young. However, while doing my research, I came across an article by Very Well Health where, Anna Mueller, Ph.D., professor of sociology at the University of Indiana who studies adolescent suicidality, said that CDC data should be interpreted with caution. “It usually takes the CDC two years to produce this data in a clean and rigorous fashion, so we should keep in mind that the numbers are provisional and subject to change”.

In this article, it’s mentioned how, since the pandemic, the data changed and saw a 5.6% decrease of cases in 2020 despite early predictions suggesting that with an event like COVID- 19 the rates would actually go up. during COVID-19 can make an already risky situation worse.

So far there hasn’t been a study that explains the decrease, but if I had to take a guess I would say factors like being with our families, staying away from sometimes a very toxic school environment, and even the way most of us switched our eating habits, all played a major factor. Honestly, I was pretty surprised to see these rates for Gen Z’s, From a millennial point of view, I think they’re smart, fair and they constantly push people to act better.

If you ever consider ending your life, remember that there’s always someone that will listen. There are many ways to prevent suicide. Reaching out to a friend, extending your support to a neighbor, or asking for help yourself are all important things to consider. Lives are way more valuable than we and sometimes it just takes someone to make us realize it.

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