Anxiety Now Top Mental Health Problem for College Students
Anxiety has overtaken depression as the top mental health reason for campus clinic visits, although depression is shown to still be increasing. That's the finding of a recent study at Penn State University.
Health experts believe that the recent spike in causes for anxiety can vary, and range from parental and academic pressure, to social media. However, counselors from the University of Central Florida noted students from all walks of life came in with similar anxiety stress: Relationships, money, and coursework. Health experts from UCF also noted that the reason many more students are seeking anxiety treatment is something they also have in common: a change in the stigma surrounding mental health.
Experts also believe that rising pressures earlier in life, such as during high school or on social media, may be factors in the spike in anxiety reports. Students of this generation, they say, are programmed for stress, and lack a certain resilience, endurance or sense of struggle experienced by older generations. This leads to pressure that becomes overwhelming, causing a rise in anxiety symptoms, instead of properly being able to manage stress.
Experts at Penn state say the counselors too, are becoming overwhelmed, and said more resources are needed to the mental health needs of students. Although many schools are required to be equipped with counselors and programs, many fill up, causing a wait list that is weeks long.