Bermuda Post

Thursday, Mar 23, 2023

‘It took a year to get help’: generation Z on mental health decline

‘It took a year to get help’: generation Z on mental health decline

Technology and Covid lockdowns blamed for rise in eating disorders and insomnia among young
It was while browsing on social media at the age of 13 that Hannah realised she had an eating disorder. Seeing other girls and women talking about their experiences, she thought: “This is me.”

Since that moment, the now 17-year-old has been on a path to recovery, which includes recently relapsing during the Covid-19 pandemic. She said that after initially seeking support via her GP, it took “about a year to get help”, despite “seeing three different doctors”.

The rise of eating disorders among young people has been highlighted in a recent report showing that the number experiencing problems has doubled in recent years.

It comes amid a general decline in mental health among those aged six to 23, with more than half of young people aged 17 to 23 struggling with insomnia.

Hannah puts the rise in eating disorders down to a lack of control among her generation.

“I think that is the main thing and there is also a huge misconception about balance and what is healthy,” she said, adding that during consecutive lockdowns, people were bombarded with messages that they needed to “exercise” and “lose weight”.

She finds social media more helpful than damaging, saying it has allowed her to connect with people who share her experiences. She has also struggled to get help, saying she often felt dismissed by doctors.

When she first approached her family practitioner, they seemed uninterested, despite the fact that her period had stopped.

Eventually, she was referred to children’s mental health services and received outpatient support, which continued until the first coronavirus pandemic lockdown in March 2020. As soon support was withdrawn, she relapsed and is now back in the care system.

Rebecca, a mother of two, agrees that getting support for young people is challenging. She has struggled to get help via the NHS for her 11-year-old son, who has anxiety-induced insomnia that leaves him lying awake in the middle of the night. She eventually paid for a private counsellor.

There is not enough recognition for mental health problems in young children, she said, adding that her son’s problems really “came to a head during lockdown”.

“[He] is an overthinker,” she said. As well as the pandemic, his insomnia has also been affected by starting at a new school and moving house. After trying home remedies, such as spraying lavender on her son’s pillow, she sought professional help.

The boy believes the rise in sleeplessness is due to the pressure his generation is under, all made worse by coronavirus.

“In lockdown, people were stuck inside all the time and could not see friends. That made things worse,” he said. He added that social media does not help, as it magnifies problems for children.

It is for this reason that Rebecca tries to keep her sons away from platforms such as WhatsApp, and she thinks that not being able to sleep is inherently linked to a rise in anxiety and the fact that young people are exposed to much more than previous generations. “They have also endured a lot in the past 18 months,” she said.

Rebecca’s nine-year-old son is exhibiting the same symptoms as his brother, although she has yet to explore whether he too has anxiety.

“I think there should be more recognition of mental health problems in young children. If the pandemic had not happened, I think there would be less awareness,” she said.

Hannah agrees that education is key and said she would love to see schools talk more about eating disorders. “There is so much taught about the obesity crisis, but no one is talking about those dying of eating disorders every year,” she said.

“The intervention also needs to be quicker because the longer an eating disorder is left untreated, the harder it is for someone to get better.”

Related Articles

Bermuda Post
Donald Trump arrested – Twitter goes wild with doctored pictures
NYPD is setting up barricades outside Manhattan Criminal Court ahead of Trump arrest.
Credit Suisse's Scandalous History Resulted in an Obvious Collapse - It's time for regulators who fail to do their job to be held accountable and serve as an example by being behind bars.
Home Secretary Suella Braverman tours potential migrant housing in Rwanda as asylum deal remains mired in legal challenges
Paris Rioting vs Macron anti democratic law
'Sexual Fantasy' Assignment At US School Outrages Parents
Credit Suisse to borrow $54 billion from Swiss central bank
Russian Hackers Preparing New Cyber Assault Against Ukraine
Jeremy Hunt insists his Budget will get young parents and over-50s back into work
If this was in Tehran, Moscow or Hong Kong
Nashville police officer, and a female driver shooting one another
TRUMP: "Standing before you today, I am the only candidate who can make this promise: I will prevent World War III."
Mexican President Claims Mexico is Safer than the U.S.
A brief banking situation report
Lady bites police officer and gets instantly reaction
We are witnessing widespread bank fails and the president just gave a 5 min speech then walked off camera.
Donald Trump's asked by Tucker Carlson question on if the U.S. should support regime change in Russia?.
'No relation to the American SVB': India's SVC Bank acts to calm depositors amid brand name confusion.
Good news: The U.S. government is now guaranteeing all deposits, held by, Silicon Valley Bank, and the funds are available as of today
Silicon Valley Bank exec was Lehman Brothers CFO
In a potential last-ditch effort, HSBC is considering a rescue deal to save Silicon Valley Bank UK from insolvency
BBC Director General, Tim Davie, has apologized, but not resigned, yet, following the disruption of sports programmes over the weekend
Elon Musk Is Planning To Build A Town In Texas For His Employees
The Silicon Valley Bank’s collapse effect is spreading around the world, affecting startup companies across the globe
City officials in Berlin announced on Thursday that all swimmers at public pools will soon be allowed to swim topless
Fitness scam
Market Chaos as USDC Loses Peg to USD after $3.3 Billion Reserves Held by Silicon Valley Bank Closed.
A primitive judge in Australia sparked outrage when he told a breastfeeding woman to leave his courtroom for being “a distraction"
Barcelona is feeling the heat as they face corruption charges over payments to former vice-president of Spain's referees' committee, Jose Maria Enriquez Negreira
Senator Tom Cotton: If the Mexican Government Won’t Stop Cartels from Killing Americans, Then U.S. Government Should
Banking regulators close SVB, the largest bank failure since the financial crisis
The unelected UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, an immigrant himself, defends new controversial crackdown on illegal migration
Old clip of Bill Gates saying Ukraine is a big, fat, corrupt sinkhole is going viral
Man’s penis amputated by mistake after he’s wrongly diagnosed with a tumour
In a major snub to Downing Street's Silicon Valley dreams, UK chip giant Arm has dealt a serious blow to the government's economic strategy by opting for a US listing
How do stolen goods end up on Amazon, eBay and Facebook Marketplace?
It's the question on everyone's lips: could a four-day workweek be the future of employment?
Is Gold the Ultimate Safe Haven Asset in Times of Uncertainty?
Spain officials quit over trains that were too wide for tunnels...
Don Lemon, a CNN anchor, has provided a list of five areas that he believes the black community needs to address.
Hello. Here is our news digest from London.
Corruption and Influence Buying Uncovered in International Mainstream Media: Investigation Reveals Growing Disinformation Mercenaries
Givenchy Store in New York Robbed of $50,000 in Merchandise
European MP Clare Daly condemns US attack on Nord Stream
Former U.S. President Carter will spend his remaining time at home and receive hospice care instead of medication
Tucker Carlson called Trump a 'demonic force'
US Joins 15 NATO Nations in Largest Space Data Collection Initiative in History
White House: No ETs over the United States
U.S. Jet Shoots Down Flying Object Over Canada
Being a Tiktoker might be expensive…