The world is changing day by day, hour by hour. Some of these changes are good ones which make us celebrate life and humanity while others have darker tones that colour their inception. Of these dark changes, we find the current age of students falling prey to a rise in the prevalence of certain mental health issues. Mental health always brings with it a negative stigma which society has yet to work around. The result of an unwelcoming society leads to a large population of parents and friends who may choose to remain in denial rather than accept the suffering of those touched by a distressing mental health condition. The World Health Organization (WHO) has estimated that 7.5% of Indians suffer from mental issues. The worst part is that the current Indian educational system is most definitely ill-equipped to handle this problem.
Here are the top 3 conditions that have grappled Indian students in the recent years.
- Depression: This is one of the most talked about and misunderstood illnesses in current times. Recently, the WHO ran a major campaign titled ‘Depression: Let’s talk’ on World Health Day. Depression has become the world’s largest looming disability, but it is the youth that are the most vulnerable. Usually, when signs of depression occur, it is normal for the victim to find it difficult to articulate exactly what is making them feel the way they do. It is hard for them to work out their complex thoughts and emotions that the illness has imposed upon them, without professional help. The truth is that depression cannot be defined by your everyday sadness or feelings of life giving us an all-time low. Society treats depression the same way a cat sees colour – just because one can’t see it, it doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.
- Anxiety Disorders: Anxiety disorders refer to a spectrum of mental disorders characterized by feelings of fear and anxiety. These include generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), panic disorder, phobias, social anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). People tend to confuse anxiety with anxiety disorders. In reality, the difference is the same as that of a fire and a burn – one is the cause while the latter is the effect. It is prudent to note that the latter can also have dire consequences on the individual’s life, depending on its intensity.
- Eating Disorders – This category of disorders belongs to the more recent upsurges. Media and the world that is projected to young minds are partially to blame. The subconscious pressures inflicted by such exposure can push some to extreme measures in order to meet certain physical requirements. However, eating disorders cannot be restricted to wanting to control one’s appearance to gain acceptance. A wide variety of causes may result in eating disorders, depending on the individual and their environment.
Eating disorders are common amongst youngsters, especially young women. The common symptoms and signs include distorted perceptions of body image, irregular heartbeats, dehydration, a fear of eating in public as well as constant excuses for not eating. Eating disorders are found in different types including anorexia, bulimia and binge eating disorder (BED). These, if left unattended to, usually lead to kidney failure, stunted growth, heart problems and loss of menstruation and reproductive system failures in women.