The "25 crisis" of which psychologists warn: why more and more young people go to consultation

The "25 crisis" of which psychologists warn: why more and more young people go to consultation

One of the consequences of Covid-19 has been to put the icing on the ‘cake’ of mental health. As data from the World Health Organization (WHO) shows, depression and anxiety increased by 25% during the first year of the pandemic. If this figure worries someone, what should they think when they know that the 56% of young Spaniards have acknowledged suffering some mental health problem in the past year.

This percentage has caused some experts to start talking about the “25 crisis“That’s right, you no longer have to ‘wait’ at 40 to come across a situation like this. The experts consulted by EL ESPAÑOL are hardly surprised when this topic is mentioned: “And why don’t we say the crisis of the 18?” asks José Pedro Espada, child and adolescent psychologist and collaborator of the General Council of Psychology of Spain.

Another specialist such as Fernando Azor understands that “we are defining a stage of life marked by decision-making.” Finish pre-university studies, choose a career, a master’s degree and… Now what? This uncertainty has resulted in “a lack of goals in young people” of the so-called Generation ZSword points.

[Marina Díaz Marsá, psiquiatra: “Los problemas de salud mental en jóvenes nos tienen desbordados”]

And it is that the feeling that more and more young people suffer from this type of problem is, despite the validity of the topic, refuted by data: 36% of young people between the ages of 15 and 29 have been diagnosed with a mental health problemshows the Youth Barometer, Health and Wellbeing 2021published by the FAD Youth and Mutua Madrileña Foundations.

Because right now

There are questions to which sometimes no answer is found. And this one could be said to be one of them. None of the psychologists interviewed by this newspaper has been able to point out a clear reason. In fact, Espada and Azor agree in not knowing if it is “because there has been more demand or because going to therapy has become normal”. For Javier Ares, psychologist specializing in anxiety and depression, “the infoxication generated by the networks does not help“.

Since the mask covered our faces back in May 2020, the Center for Sociological Research (CIS) estimates that almost three million Spaniards have gone to a psychologist or psychiatrist due to problems, mostly anxiety or depression. Espada exemplifies the effects of Covid-19 in a more precise way: “Those who were well were affected, although they ended up recovering. But for those who were already a little ill, the pandemic meant the jog final”.

Remedying this ‘new’ 25-year-old crisis can serve to deal with those that come later in life. This is how Espada himself recognizes it: “Psychological problems do not appear at the age of 40, they normally drag on from a young age.” This is why his experience has shown him that young people come too late to the consultation.

what are the reasons

Before delving into the causes that lead young people to have depression and anxiety, Ares warns that “human behavior does not have a common denominator. Even so, he does find that more topics such as “love problems, difficulty finding a vocation and lack of self-esteem“. The latter stands out above all because young people now present a “lack of objectives” that Espada has also perceived.

[El drama de la salud mental: el 43% de los españoles se siente “mal o muy mal” emocionalmente]

This child and adolescent psychologist also emphasizes that such a situation does not usually occur suddenly, but rather “a series of previous signs appear” that are not easy to detect. In addition, he adds that in this transition from youth to adult life “we try to solve on our own“These internalized or emotional problems, as anxiety and depression disorders are known.

Azor, who is on his way to his center while answering our questions, has noticed that “one of the main causes is the uncertainty”. A problem that is better understood if one takes into account that in the first quarter of 2021 only 14.9% of young people in Spain were emancipated, according to the report of the Emancipation Observatory of the Youth Council.

How to handle the situation

“Perhaps it is not politically correct to say this now,” is how Espada begins when he is asked about any guidelines to give to young people. And it is that after this confession the following words are “culture of effort”. However, she wants to clarify what he just said: “What I want is that young people do not hide behind the circumstances that everything is wrong so as not to seek a solution“.

Both Ares and Espada ‘sweep’ against him to deal with this type of situation: “The first thing is to ask for help, not to go to therapy,” the latter clarifies. In fact, “I would recommend that you do not always go to a specialist“. Both also agree on “trying to lean on conversations with family or friends.”

And it is that one of the solutions that young people are turning to more and more is the consumption of antidepressants. In fact, Psychotropic drugs have become an alternative to prevent suicide, as happened to this 24-year-old from Madrid. In this sense, for Espada it is “a terrible solution”. She emphatically assures that she does not understand why to use these pharmacological treatments when “we are facing an emotional and not an organic problem”.

[Salud mental, la pandemia silenciosa tras la Covid: “El 19% de los españoles toma tranquilizantes”]

His colleagues prefer to be more cautious. For this reason, Ares emphasizes the “mixed” concept, including psychological and psychiatric treatment. Although Azor also agrees with this opinion, he does highlight the essential role that therapy plays in this process: “If you don’t teach the person how to manage their emotions, it is complicated that it does not become chronic and surely it has to remain medicalized“.

loss of stigma

Looking back, Azor assures that “we have been losing the stigma towards mental health with the new generations”. Sword points in the same direction as now it is the son who takes the initiative. She even confesses that in her consultation she has heard, from the parents of a young woman, the following: “She has told us that all her friends go to the psychologist and she does not.”

As if it were a soccer game for the national team, there is an answer in which the three psychologists agree: lack of resources. Ares comments, in this regard, that when receiving patients who have seen a public health psychologist, “they often have difficulties making an appointment and the therapies are very far apart in time.”

Among other things, it is because “psychology is expensive”, as Azor acknowledges. But should we ask ourselves about the price in this problem that affects some 450 million people in the world?

Source: Elespanol

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