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Gen Z: What’s behind their increased mental health struggles?

Gen Z: What's behind their increased mental health struggles?

Gen Z, the generation born between 1997 and 2012, is navigating a distinct mental health landscape. A recent Gallup and Walton Family Foundation (WFF) study ventures into the emotional world of Gen Z, unveiling their specific worries and struggles.

Crushing Worries and Struggling to Thrive

Gen Z, surveyed in a study of over 3,000 individuals, grapples with a myriad of anxieties. Concerns over financial stability, the troubling prevalence of gun violence, and their readiness for the future weigh heavily on their minds.

Despite 76% maintaining optimism about the future, a mere 44% feel adequately prepared for it, with only 15% rating their mental health as “excellent.” Shockingly, just 47% of Gen Z Americans report thriving in their lives, signaling unique challenges for this generation.

The Mental Health Conversation

Previous research has also illuminated Gen Z’s mental health struggles. In 2018, the American Psychological Association found that a higher percentage of Gen Z individuals rated their mental health as fair or poor compared to previous generations. The state of the nation emerged as a significant stressor for them. A 2022 study echoed these concerns, with 70% of Gen Zers identifying mental health as the area requiring the most attention or improvement in their lives.

Identifying the Issues

Gen Z, however, stands out in their ability to articulate their mental health challenges. Growing up in an era with increased awareness and discourse surrounding mental health, they are more inclined to acknowledge their struggles with issues like anxiety and depression. This generation might be the first to put a name to these feelings and seek help more readily.

A World of Stressors

Gen Z’s anxiety comes from various fronts. They’re digital natives, spending about four hours daily on social media, a double-edged sword where they speak openly about mental health but often find it detrimental. Meanwhile, they grapple with mounting global issues, particularly the specter of gun violence and economic pressures like inflation and crippling debt. It’s a whirlwind of modern challenges that they’re uniquely tuned in to.

Final Note

In today’s digital age, Gen Z surfs the waves of modern challenges armed with self-awareness and an open dialogue about their mental well-being. Join them in shaping a world where empathy and support flourish.

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