America: time for a depression recession.


| 4 Comments
Over the past few years I have noticed an increase in the number of my family and friends being treated for depression and anxiety issues, advertisements concerning depression medications as well as increases in discussions concerning depression and anxiety on the news. Are depression and anxiety rates actually increasing or are we just becoming more aware of the issue?


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 I researched this question and came across an interesting article on Psychology Today. The article stated that there actually has been a proven steady increase in depression and anxiety issues over the past 50 to 70 years and it does not seem to be slowing down anytime soon. This conclusion was discovered by a women named Jean Twenge, who is a researcher at San Diego State University. Twenge and her colleagues reviewed the outcomes of the MMPI or Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory for high school and college students for every year since 1938. The conclusion was quite clear to see. Depression and anxiety rates were, in fact, on the rise.

But, why? What was making more and more people feel depressed and anxious in America? My first thought was harsher economic times but this idea, along with war and other major world events, did not show any correlation to when the depression and anxiety rates were the highest. They may have caused depression and anxiety on some occasions but it has not been the major influence for the increasing rates.  


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The reason behind it all, appears to occur due to more individual and personal issues and concerns. After completing farther studies and questionnaires, Twenge concluded that the rates were increasing in young people because of how they viewed the world. Many young people fear that they have much less ability to control their future, whether is be careers, marriage, finances or children. Generations have also been moving from intrinsic goals, such as concern over the person's own development, to extrinsic goals, which are more based on material rewards and success. Do you think this is true for most cases? Why or why not?  

Works Cited:

The Dramatic Rise of Anxiety and Depression in Children and Adolescents: Is It Connected to the Decline in Play and Rise in Schooling? By: Peter Gray on January 26, 2010. 


4 Comments

This is actually quite alarming. Although there is evidence that the rise could have been caused by the fact that in previous years depression often went unreported, the world has drastically changed in the last century. Rather than having the sense of security of past decades about easily obtaining a job and building a life, the young adult of today is constantly aware of the fierce competition that runs rampant in modern society. We live in a world of high unemployment and fierce job competition. It is no surprise that depression and anxiety levels have increased because there is a lot more to worry about. From reaching adulthood onward, young adults face a future of uncertainty. This uncertainty is naturally illustrated by high anxiety and depression.

Perhaps it's partly genetic as well. Seeing as people tend to be more open about their depression/anxiety these days, they may meet people at support groups and fall in love, thus producing offspring who are more prone to anxiety and depression.
I also agree with the idea that living in a fast paced world is going to raise depression rates. People who feel they have to be up with the newest trend, know the most (and best people), and never slow down are going to lose it eventually. In today's society, it is frowned upon to ever take a moment for ourselves. It is a sign of "laziness" if we relax. This constant pressure to be productive and accomplishing things is going to add on to regular pressures of life.

Anxiety and depression are two problems that a lot of young adults in America face and I say rightfully so. Times are much more complicated now rather when our parents and grandparents were young. People are smarter more competitive the world is a much more daunting place because of all these changes and with such changes it is hard for us to adapt and control these. I am certain that these problems are two that are going to be almost impossible to fully deal with or minimize. With all the daily pressures put on the youth of America to succeed it is no wonder these rates have increased. The problem lies with the future. What is going to happen to future generations if we are currently facing them?

My initial reaction to this blog is that depression and anxiety has not increased. People are now starting to pay attention to what it is and how to address it. I feel this way due to the soldiers with Post-traumatic stress disorder. Post- traumatic stress disorder has been going on for years with soldiers but was never treated. It is just now that people are really starting to see that this is a problem and now soldiers have to do a check out thing before they can fully return to their homes.
But with today’s society and the way the media tells us what to care about and shapes everything we do, it’s not hard to believe that people are more depress today, especially young adults. The stress of not getting a job and living these unrealistic celebrity lifestyles is very common in young adults. It’s becoming so easy to get famous for the stupidest things and people really feed into these things and look at it as a way out. People think they can just be the next Snooki and when things don’t turn out the way it creates depression. They want what they can’t have and most likely their never going to get it and for some people that’s too hard to grasp.

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