Can education partake in the development of Mental Health conditions in teenagers?
To bring awareness to mental health issues, I will discuss with you about teenagers who have formed anxiety, depression, eating disorders such as anorexia and other conditions from secondary education.
However, to bring awareness to Mental Health, does anyone know what it is? Mental health is a person’s condition with regard to their psychological and emotional well-being. The emotional well-being of teenagers can be dramatically changed by stress and pupils comments during educational hours. Generally, anorexia is the most developed mental health issue due to the emotional state of a pupil. During 2010, a female student was diagnosed with an eating disorder due to mental stress brought by peer pressure. She was entering her 4th year of secondary education when comments made by fellow peers began the development of anorexia, which she was only diagnosed with midway through the school year. Some of these comments drew on the fact of what a stereotypical teenage girl should look like, thin, tall and pretty, sadly this is the main cause for mental health in teenage girls.
How many pupils in one secondary school can develop Mental health conditions? Roughly, there are over 1000 pupils, and up to 250 of those pupils can generate at least one condition, if not more, that's one quatre of the school. Unfortunately, for every 3 out of 5 of those students, Mental health is brought by secondary education. Two decades ago, that figure was less than 50 pupils being diagnosed, a fifth of what it is now.
Being diagnosed with anxiety or depression doesn't just affect whoever's been diagnosed, but also those around them. My cousin developed anxiety during her time in secondary school, which affected her parents as well because she became so fearful of others opinions that she developed agoraphobia, does anyone know what that is? It's the fear to leave your house. She's now 25, living in Dudley, and the furthest she has gone from her house is Dudley zoo. Her anxiety had controlled her life for over 10 years, and this has affected her parents. They couldn't leave her by herself and haven't gone on a holiday for years, yet this is only one situation linked to anxiety.
Depression and anxiety are being detected more in teenagers now than 2001, which is very concerning to doctors, as the number of teenagers developing Mental Health issues is at its highest ever. What's even more concerning is that parents are spotting it in their sons, but not their daughters. Every 20 teenage boys that are diagnosed, 30 girls are left undiagnosed.
But how is all of this linked to education in secondary schools? Peer pressure and stress of work are the main culprits. By other pupils asking for the answers over and over then blaming the pupil they asked when the answer is wrong causes pressure to work harder and not to disappoint everyone else, hence the term peer pressure. But then, teenagers receive a lot of work during school hours which can stress them out. Some do all the work with ease, but there are some who struggle daily, which stresses their psychological state, causing anxiety or other conditions. Then the biggest issue with the mental state of pupils, stereotypes. Nerds, preps, athletes, there are more but these are the most common. If you were to look to the person next to you, what was your first thought of what group they would be in? Because after you've gotten to know them, that stereotype has changed into who you know they are. This has caused depression in pupils though because they never fit into that friend group or are the 'loner' as some of you say.
This presentation was to bring awareness to you about how all of us have a part to play in others mental health stability.