Youth Mental Health in a Changing World

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Youth Mental Health in a Changing World

It is no longer news that a lot of people are passing through hard times due to social, economic and political depression all over the
world.

While some people have been able to manage these conflicts, others find it difficult to resolve it, which eventually affects their psyche.

Frustration, get-rich quick syndrome, unemployment, economic recession, drug abuse, and broken homes have been identified as some
factors responsible for mental disorder.

Others include, depression and anxiety, which are common mental disorders that impact on the ability to work productively.

The World Federation for Mental Health in 1992 established World Mental Health Day in an effort to promote education and advocacy on
mental health sufferers.

Mental health, which includes a person’s emotional, psychological and social well-being, has become increasingly important in recent times
as an estimated 350 million people worldwide suffer from depression.

The United Nations, therefore, designated October 10 every year, as World Mental Health Day to raise public awareness about mental health
issues worldwide.

It also affords stakeholders working on mental health issues to talk about their work, and what needs to be done to make mental health care
a reality for people worldwide.

This year’s theme ‘young people and mental health in a changing world is apt as more young people these days are vulnerable to mental
distress and illness.

It is, however, pathetic that little attention is given to mental health services due to lack of human and financial resources in many
countries.

More funding is therefore needed to promote mental health to increase people’s awareness on the prevention and treatment.

There is need for the Federal and state governments to invest in the prevention and treatment of mentally deranged persons as this will
reduce the roaming about of these people.

Not only this, both the Federal and state governments should treat people who are mentally sick free of charge.

Neuropsychiatric hospitals of international standard must be established in each of the six geo- political zones of the country to
treat and rehabilitate the mentally sick.

Parents and teachers can help build life skills of children and adolescents to help them cope with everyday challenges at home and at
school.

Investments by government and the involvement of the social, health and education sectors in comprehensive, integrated evidence-based
programmes for the mental health for young people is also essential to reduce the scourge.

Awareness should be raised among adolescents and young adults on ways to look after their mental health and to help individuals, parents and
teachers know how to support their friends, children and students.

To cap it all, Nigerians should desist from stigmatization, discrimination and neglect of people suffering from mental disorders.

Morenike Esan

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