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Sunday, 11 January 2015

Mental illnesses among youth on rise

‘Youngsters are easily getting frustrated by failure to such an extent that they do not hesitate to end their lives’..

The modern lifestyle in Indian urban cities is giving rise to an entirely new and unique mental health issues among youngsters compared to the traditional and more common illnesses like schizophrenia, depression and Obsessive Compulsive Disorders (OCD). More and more psychiatrists agree that the young in India are becoming prone like never before to mental illness because of stressful working and living conditions.

According to behavioural experts, various examination systems for professional education has spawned a new crop of youngsters who are getting easily frustrated by failure to such an extent that they do not hesitate to take the extreme step of ending lives. Such ‘situational’ related depression wherein tough conditions push the young towards extreme meltdowns are gradually on the rise, they aver.

To buttress the argument, psychiatrists give the instance of undergraduate students who completed their MBBS degree in Italy, Russia and China, but struggle to clear Medical Council of India (MCI) test conducted to make them eligible to practice medicine in India. “Every year, out of 400 doctors appearing for this test in India, only 0.7 per cent pass, which means like just three doctors. In our practice, we have seen such young doctors getting frustrated and attempting to end life,” says president Dr. Vidyadhar Watve, Indian Psychiatrists Society (IPS).

The psychiatrist, who is in Hyderabad to participate in the national conference of IPS, says that another major modern lifestyle that is triggering mental health issues among youth is substance abuse. The members of the psychiatry body throughout India have witnessed a trend of rising cases of abuse of alcohol, tobacco and cannabis in various forms.

“Young people have access to immense wealth, but little quality time. So in the weekends, with wealth at their disposal, there is a rampant abuse of alcohol and cannabis in the form of charas and ganja. This behaviour is breaking homes, families, creating mental health issues and making the young slaves to drugs. Substance abusers are weak mentally,” Dr. Vidyadhar said.

Another major problem that the young in the country face is burnout.

“Today’s young starts working around 23 years age and by the time they reach 29 years, companies tend to lose their utility value. Hectic work schedules would have already caused mental and physical damage. Such situations often lead to broken marriages, parental conflicts, social withdrawal and frustrations,” psychiatrist Dr. G. Prasad Rao adds.

Source: The Hindu, 11th Jan 2015

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