America’s Youth in Crisis as Suicide Doubles During Lockdown

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From Washington Examiner

Children and young adults are experiencing increased mental health issues, and suicide also is on the rise within the age group at least in part because of ongoing state shutdowns, according to several reports.

Within months of governors and local authorities shuttering schools, children were increasingly brought to emergency room doctors and specialists, according to a by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

“Beginning in April 2020, the proportion of children’s mental health–related ED visits among all pediatric ED visits increased and remained elevated through October,” the report states. “Compared with 2019, the proportion of mental health–related visits for children aged 5–11 and 12–17 years increased approximately 24%. and 31%, respectively.”

According to an August 2020 CDC survey, state shutdowns negatively impacted the mental and emotional health of the youngest people who participated. Those under age 18 experienced the highest rates of anxiety, depression and other mental health issues, with 75 percent saying they were struggling with at least one mental health issue.

By November, the CDC reported on emergency room visits of youth under age 18. While the number of overall emergency room visits fell because for many months hospitals were required by governors to shutter services to non-COVID patients, the number of mental health-related visits increased. Data from the CDC’s National Syndromic Surveillance Program from Jan. 1 to Oct. 17, 2020, compared to the same months in 2019, found a 31 percent increase in mental health issues reported among adolescents between 12 and 17 years old.

Emergency room doctors are increasingly reporting patients presenting mental health issues, and more children are waiting in emergency departments for in-patient care, the report found. Even with telehealth, the lack of outpatient services and shortage of psychiatrists and therapists trained to work with children has been impacted by ongoing school closures.

Suicide among youth, now referred to as “Generation Lockdown,” increased nationwide in 2020.

Original Article by Bethany Blankley of Washington Examiner can be Found Here




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