Depression In College Students Statistics
Mental health college statistics show that depression is one of the most common and fatal mental illnesses. It is characterized by sadness and anxious feelings. College students show a high incidence of this illness. The American College Health Association finds depression and anxiety the leading hindrances affecting academic performance. Apart from its negative effect on academic performance, depression also puts you at a greater risk of substance abuse and suicidal thinking. Depression has always been on the rise among college students. College is also the time when many people experience depression for the first time. A more disturbing fact is that many students do not get medical help to deal with depression.
More than a quarter of college students are diagnosed with depression.
Mental illness statistics show that about 27% of college students in the US are diagnosed with depression. But the actual number of students with depression can be more as a large number of students might not even realize it or get medical help.
Students admit that depression affects their normal functioning.
Many students do realize it when depression takes a toll on their lives. A 2019 report published by the ACHA points out that 45.1% of students admitted that depression was hampering their normal functioning.
The rate of depression among college students has doubled.
Students Identified With Emotional Disturbance For An Individualized Education Program 2020
Only .73%* of students are identified as having an ED for IEP.
For purposes of an IEP, the term Emotional Disturbance is used to define youth with a mental illness that is affecting their ability to succeed in school.
Early identification for IEPs is critical. IEPs provide the services, accommodations and support students with ED need to receive a quality education. Inadequate education leads to poor outcomes such as low academic achievement, social isolation, unemployment, and involvement in the juvenile system. Further, the federal eligibility criteria to identify students as having an emotional disturbance for an IEP have indicated extremely poor reliability among school psychologists, and therefore must be revised to adequately identify students in need of more supports.
*The rate for this measure is shown as a rate per 1,000 students. The calculation was made this way for ease of reading. Unfortunately, doing so hides the fact that the percentages are significantly lower. If states were doing a better job of identifying whether youth had emotional difficulties that could be better supported through an IEP the rates would be closer to 7 percent instead of .7 percent.
The state rate of students identified as having an Emotional Disturbance for an IEP ranges from 27.72% per 1,000 students in Vermont to 2.02% per 1,000 students in Alabama.
High percentages are associated with positive outcomes and low percentages are associated with poorer outcomes
General Teen Depression Statistics
- Depression is the most common mental health disorder in the United States among teens and adults.
- 2.8 million youth age 12-17 had at least one major depressive episode in 2014.
- Between 10 to 15 percent of teenagers have some symptoms of teen depression at any one time.
- About 5 percent of teens are suffering from major depression at any one time
- As many as 8.3 percent of teens suffer depression for at least a year at a time, compared to about 5.3 percent of the general population.
- Most teens with depression will suffer from more than one episode. 20 to 40 percent will have more than one episode within two years and 70 percent will have more than one episode before adulthood. Episodes of teen depression generally last about 8 months.
- Dysthymia, a type of mild, long-lasting depression, affects about 2 percent of teens, and about the same percentage of teens develop bipolar disorder in their late teenage years. 15 percent of teens with depression eventually develop bipolar disorder.
- A small percent of teens also suffer from seasonal depression, usually during the winter months in higher latitudes.
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Diet Is Important To Mental Health
Even factors like what you are eating can impact stress, anxiety and depression. It is extremely important for students to eat healthy meals regularly and pay attention to the ingredients in their food. Research has proven time and time again that what you eat affects your mood.
Different food can even change the chemical balance of the body. For example, Tryptophan is found in poultry, oil-rich fish, beans, baked potatoes, oats, nuts and seeds and it aids in serotonin production, which helps regulate mood.
With so many different factors leading to anxiety and depression its nearly impossible for teachers to identify these disorders without any prior training. The longer anxiety and depression go without treatment, the higher risk students face of a worsening condition, academic disengagement and a steep decrease in academic performance.
Teen Depression Stats By Gender And Age
2014 statistics from the National Institute of Mental Health show the following numbers for teens that had at least one major depressive episode in the previous 12 months:
- 17.3% of adolescents that had a major depressive episode in 2014 were female.
- 5.7% of adolescents that had a major depressive episode in 2014 were male.
- 5.7% were 12 years old.
- 8.7% were 13 years old.
- 10.7% were 14 years old.
- 13.0% were 15 years old.
- 14.1% were 16 years old.
- 15.1% were 17 years old.
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Depression Symptoms In Teens: Why Todays Teens Are More Depressed Than Ever
After a decline in the 1990s, the number of young people that commit suicide has been increasing every year. While no one can explain exactly why, many experts say adolescents and teens today probably face more pressures at home or school, worry about financial issues for their families, and use more alcohol and drugs. This is a very dangerous time for our young people, Kathy Harms, a staff psychologist at Kansas Citys Crittenton Childrens Center, told the Portland Press Herald. Were seeing more anxiety and depression in children of all ages.
What Percent Of College Students Have A Mental Illness
It is often said that college is one of the most fun phases of life. But how much of that is true in todays context? College students are certainly not having a happy life. In fact, a look at college student mental health statistics show that they are one of the groups that are more severely struck by mental health issues. Many college students experience serious mental issues, including ADHD, depression, and suicidal tendencies.
Active Minds, a premiere Not-For-Profit organization that works for improving mental health and awareness about it among college students, states that 39% of college students experience at least one significant mental health issue. A great volume of literature and studies substantiate the fact that mental illness among college students is a major cause of concern. Reuters reported that between 2007-2018, the incidence of depression, suicidal thinking, and self-injury among US college students has doubled. These studies also highlight the fact that such issues continue to be on the rise.
With the COVID-19 pandemic that has brought in several restrictions to daily life and added a great deal of uncertainty for students, the incidence of mental illness is set to see a further spike.
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Dropping Out Of College Due To Depression
Withdrawing from college due to depression is also becoming a frequent occurrence among young adults. According to the National Association for Mental Illness, 64 percent of college students who dropped out did so because of mental health disorders. Moreover, half of those who ended up leaving college with depression hadnt accessed any mental health services while on campus.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, college enrollment has continued to go down, and researchers believe mental health issues may account in large part for the decline. The National Student Clearinghouse Research Center reports that 26 percent of college freshmen who started in fall 2019 didnt return the following fallthe highest number of dropouts since 2012.
Missing Class Can Be A Sign Of Anxiety
These disorders can also lead to school refusal, or school phobia. This is when a students anxiety or depression is so severe that they begin avoiding going to school at all. This can begin with missing class, going home early and staying home, but eventually can lead to school drop out. The Centre for Emotional Health at Macquarie University states that 49% of adults with anxiety reported leaving school early and 24% claimed that anxiety was the primary reason for them leaving.
The negative impact anxiety and depression have on students academic performance doesnt just hurt them and their families, but it has consequences for the economy and society as a whole because they are not receiving a proper education.
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Emerging Trends In Substance Misuse:
- MethamphetamineIn 2019, NSDUH data show that approximately 2 million people used methamphetamine in the past year. Approximately 1 million people had a methamphetamine use disorder, which was higher than the percentage in 2016, but similar to the percentages in 2015 and 2018. The National Institute on Drug Abuse Data shows that overdose death rates involving methamphetamine have quadrupled from 2011 to 2017. Frequent meth use is associated with mood disturbances, hallucinations, and paranoia.
- CocaineIn 2019, NSDUH data show an estimated 5.5 million people aged 12 or older were past users of cocaine, including about 778,000 users of crack. The CDC reports that overdose deaths involving have increased by one-third from 2016 to 2017. In the short term, cocaine use can result in increased blood pressure, restlessness, and irritability. In the long term, severe medical complications of cocaine use include heart attacks, seizures, and abdominal pain.
- KratomIn 2019, NSDUH data show that about 825,000 people had used Kratom in the past month. Kratom is a tropical plant that grows naturally in Southeast Asia with leaves that can have psychotropic effects by affecting opioid brain receptors. It is currently unregulated and has risk of abuse and dependence. The National Institute on Drug Abuse reports that health effects of Kratom can include nausea, itching, seizures, and hallucinations.
Economic Impact Of Depression
- Depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide and is a major contributor to the overall global burden of disease.
- Neuropsychiatric disorders are the leading cause of disability in the U.S. with major depressive disorder being the most common
- Mental Health is the second leading workplace concern, following only family issues.
- Depression contributes to the estimated $100 billion annual cost of depression for U.S. employers, including $44 billion a year in lost productivity alone.
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Stress And Anxiety Are Making Day To Day Life Difficult For Hundreds Of Thousands Of Students
The extent of mental health problems in UK universities has been laid bare in a new YouGov survey of Britains students. More than a quarter of students report having a mental health problem of one type or another.
Female students are more likely to say they have mental health problems than males , and LGBT students have a particularly high likelihood of mental health problems compared to their heterosexual counterparts .
For a significant proportion of students who report mental health issues, these problems can make even day-to-day tasks difficult. Nearly half say that that they have trouble completing some daily tasks and a further 4% say they cannot complete even simple tasks.
Depression and anxiety are by far the most common reported mental health ailments. Of those who suffer, 77% have depression-related problems, and 74% have anxiety related problems. Worse still, for many of these students it is common for students to be afflicted with both at once 74% of students with an anxiety-related problem also have a depression-related one. These two issues dwarf all the rest, with eating disorders being the next most common at 14%, followed by behavioural or developmental issues at 5% and learning disabilities, also at 5%.
Help is on hand
Students accept that mental health is a real issue
For students who are suffering from mental health issues, it will hopefully provide a crumb of comfort to know that their peers are aware of and accept their mental health problems.
Theres No Single Cause Of Depression
Depression often brings deeply negative or apathetic feelings, but its important to remember that these emotions do not reflect any character flaws.
In fact, depression often stems from events outside of your control, such as:
- early childhood trauma
Of course, depression can also develop without a specific triggering event or preexisting condition, just as it can result from numerous sources. Exploring the causes of your depression with a professional can help you determine the most effective treatment plan.
Also Check: 5 Risk Factors For Depression
As Students Struggle With Stress And Depression Colleges Act As Counselors
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The email set off alarms at Ithaca College.
Im literally fighting for my life but staying safe, 22-year-old Christopher Biehn emailed a professor in late September. I wont be in class today & just pray I wont be hospitalized long-term.
As Mr. Biehn prepared to check into a psychiatric ward four hours from campus, a crisis team from the private liberal arts college in central New York swung into action. Shortly after Mr. Biehn wrote to his professor, a campus safety officer went to his apartment to make sure he was O.K. A social worker from the college reached out to discuss academic options as he worked to manage his bipolar disorder.
Two weeks later, after returning to his home in Medford, N.J., for treatment, he applied for a medical leave of absence from the college his sixth leave in four years.
In extensive interviews, Mr. Biehn recounted his experiences. He has also written about them in a blog and in Ithaca Colleges student paper. He started a grass-roots social media campaign to promote acceptance for mood disorders, inspired to share his story in hopes of helping others.
His journey illustrates the intense struggles students can face and the increasing steps colleges are taking to manage what some experts are calling a mental health crisis on campus.
Inconsistent Academic Results Can Be A Sign Of Mental Health Issues
These disorders can also lead to inconsistent academic results. For example, a student may produce incredible work one day and barely be able to complete a single task the next. This unpredictable behavior is a prevalent sign that anxiety or depression might be present. The inconsistency of these disorders can leave students feeling frustrated and teachers confused and unsure how to approach the situation.
When students are depressed or are dealing with anxiety, they are more likely to disengage in the classroom.
This can cause them to participate in behaviors that will allow them to avoid certain events and situations. For example, missing class or going to the nurse during a quiz or presentation are a few ways students may demonstrate an anxiety disorder.
Teachers have to be prepared and know which signs to look for so that they can determine what is really going on with the student and how they can best help them.
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Adolescent Depression Social Media And Technology
Todays teens face perennial adolescent issues, as well as issues that were unknown to past generations. Among the biggest contemporary problems for teens are technology in general, and social media in particular.
A recent A& E documentary series, called Undercover High, sent a group of 20-something adults into a high school in Topeka, Kansas. Posing as students, they took classes, joined clubs, and interacted with high schoolers to find out what its really like to be a teenager today.
What they discovered is thatsocial media is a primary source of anxiety and pressure for adolescents. According to one undercover student, teens become depressed when they compare. And teens often compare their lives to the people they follow on social media.
Moreover, they feel they must uphold perfection on social media. Additionally, teen girls often feel pressured to share sexual images of themselves with male students, or to post such images online.
Furthermore, Americanteens consume an average of nine hours of media a day.In fact, 50 percent of teens feel they are addicted to their smartphones.
Ultimately, the focus on screens and social media causes damage to relationships, education, and extracurricular activities. Thus, it can contribute to teen depression, as well as ADHD, oppositional defiant disorder, and anxiety.
What This Means For You
College students are facing particularly tough challenges during this time while having to adjust to online learning amidst a pandemic. If you’re a student, reach out to your professors if you’re feeling overwhelmed and ask about potential assignment extensions or modifications. Your university may also offer mental health resources and counseling available virtually or on campus.
There Are Many Types Of Depression
If you feel depressed, it does not automatically mean you have a depressive disorder. Depression may be a symptom of another physical or psychological medical condition.
Depression could also be a natural response to a major stressor and does not indicate that youll need to prepare to live with recurring depression.
Some types of depression include:
General Mental Health In College Students Statistics
1. 64% of students drop out of college because of mental health problems.
In a survey conducted by the National Alliance on Mental Illness, a strong correlation between the number of students who drop out of college and depression was discovered. Around two-thirds of college students in the US quit their studies because of mental disorders. The study further revealed that 50% of those who dropped out didnt access mental health services.
2. According to mental health clinicians, 24.1% of college student patients were concerned about their anxiety during the 2019-2020 academic school year.
Aside from anxiety, college mental health data revealed that 18.3% of students reported depression as a top concern, followed by relationship problems , stress , family issues , trauma , and adjustment to a new environment .
5. About 75% of mental illnesses are already established by the age of 24.
The mental health of teenagers leaving home and entering a new environment is particularly vulnerable. According to college students and mental health statistics, 75% of mental health problems start by the age of 24. In most cases, symptoms emerge between 18 and 24 years of age.
3. Between 2% and 8% of college students are diagnosed with ADHD.
4. 24% of students are struggling with symptoms of bipolar disorder.
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