Young adults suffer the most from mental health problems

New study shows 

Young people aged 16-24 years are more affected than other age groups by mental health problems such as anxiety and depression, yet are least likely to seek support, a new Aviva report into adult wellbeing in the UK shows.

Despite the success of widespread initiatives to break the taboo of mental health across the UK, young adults are still almost twice as likely not to seek any support (13 per cent vs 7 per cent UK adults) compared to their older counterparts. 

Overall, the report from Aviva shows that half (50 per cent) of UK adults would feel uncomfortable or unsure about telling others if they experienced a mental health problem. Almost the same proportion (47 per cent) of UK adults are currently experiencing or have recovered from a past mental health condition themselves.

Young adults most likely to be affected

However, it is young adults (16-24) who are more likely to say they have experienced a mental health condition (63 per cent v 47 per cent UK adults) and are the least comfortable discussing their mental health problems (33 per cent vs 27 per cent UK adults), suggesting millions of young adults could be going undiagnosed or ignored. They are also least likely to feel they are receiving the right treatment for their issues (15 per cent vs 10 per cent UK adults).

Nearly half (46 per cent) of young adults say they have suffered from anxiety in the past 12 months, significantly higher than UK adults (35 per cent). Depression is also more common amongst this younger age group (39 per cent vs 30 per cent UK adults). 

Across the UK, stress was found to be the most common mental health condition among UK adults of all ages, with 37 per cent having experienced stress over the past year. This rose to 45 per cent for young adults and while 17 per cent of UK adults said they feel stressed every day, this climbed to 28 per cent for young adults.

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