It looks like therapists will not be running out of work any time soon. A recent large British survey has shown that people born since 1990 are more likely to suffer from depression than people born before that time. Depression has gone up nearly 15%, and self-harm has gone up by 14%. These findings are not just due to having better instruments to measure depression, or that they're using a new research method. The survey used identical questions to those used in the first study 10 years ago.
But at the same time, the findings show that alcohol abuse and antisocial behavior has gone down in this population.
Millennial Depression and general health
The researchers suggest that the increase in depression may be linked to the general health of the population. In the last 10 years the average body mass index has increased in the whole of Britain. 29% of those surveyed agreed that they were overweight. It is also possible that high levels of youth unemployment, decreasing social services and the declining economy are all causing anxiety. All of these are potential targets for intervention, but none of them will be quick or easy to fix.
People with depression and anxiety related disorders are likely to still have them in 20 or 30 years time. Even if employment picks up and economic conditions improve there will still be a larger proportion of the public needing social and psychological help.
Millennial Depression and economic instability
The years between 1990 and 2010, included the global financial crisis, and the era of economic austerity in the UK. The period has been compared with the social environment in wartime. The constant stress, uncertainty, and the bleak outlook all contribute to long-term ongoing psychological problems. The same may be true of the US.
All of this means that there will be a constant demand for psychotherapists, counselors, and hypnotherapists. I guess every cloud has a silver lining?
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