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(New Zealand) "A growing number of young people...[suffer] from some form of mental illness"

Aug 17, 2018, Stuff: The rise and rise of mental illness among our young Mental health issues are on the rise throughout the developed world and being young doesn't make you any less susceptible. Helen Harvey reports. … Nuutea is one of a growing number of young people in New Zealand who has suffered from some form of mental illness. Every age group is increasing but the biggest rise since 2008 is in the 12 to 17 age group. The trouble is no one seems to have a definitive answer as to the root cause of the increase and the reasons offered are many and varied. Social media gets a bad rap, and studies have found a strong correlation between the use of social media and mental health disorders such as depression, anxiety, sleep problems, eating issues, and increased suicide risk, Taranaki DHB Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist Dr Yariv Doron says. … But while there are various theories and research into the causes there is 'no bottom line'…. This said the causes for mental illness were "multifactorial' and many different parts of a person's history, experience, cultural background, genetics, and current circumstances could conspire to induce mental illness. Taranaki DHB Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist Dr Yariv Doron says the reasons for an increase in mental illness among the youth are unclear…. In the 15 to 25 age group presentations increased from 209 to 330 in the same time period. And there was a 154 per cent increase in people from that age group calling the Mental Health Crisis team, now called the Assessment and Brief Care team (ABC), for help - up from 854 in 2013 to 2168 in 2017. In Taranaki the number of people in the 10 to 14 age group being prescribed anti depressants went up from 240 in 2013 to 417 in 2017, and from 1063 to 1944 in the 15 to 19 age group. Nationally, 10,146 children in the 10 to 14 age group were prescribed antidepressants in 2017 and 56,700 in the older age group. And 1788 children under the age of nine were also prescribed anti depressants. Taranaki, like other DHBs around the country, has acknowledged recruitment challenges have impacted, in the short term, the waitlist by not having enough clinicians to take new cases. The increase in young people suffering from issues like anxiety and depression is not unique to New Zealand - it is similar to what has been seen in other countries…. "Some of the biggest contributors to youth distress are adverse childhood events, including family violence, bullying, poverty, sexual abuse and social exclusion. Early intervention is important." … "The world in which young people now live is rapidly changing with different stressors, including an ever-changing job market, climate change, the introduction of new technology and more….

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