GUWAHATI, Oct 10 - On the occasion of World Mental Health Day today, the GNRC Hospitals highlighted the importance of addressing adolescent mental health problems at a programme organised here.
It also highlighted the pivotal role played by teachers and guides to create awareness about mental health among the younger generation. This year, the theme for World Mental Health Day 2018 is ‘Young people and mental health in a changing world’.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr Suresh Chakraborty, Professor and Head of Psychiatry, GMCH, said, “Depression is a major global health issue and in India, it has even affected the young and adolescent population. According to statistics, the depression rates in the country have increased rapidly over the last decade, and today about 50 per cent of the youth affected are under the age of 14 and 75 per cent under 25. At present, there is a critical need to address this issue as India has the largest youth population in the world.”
Highlighting statistics, Dr Kuladhar Saikia, DGP, Assam, pointed out that as far as the burden of disease is concerned, depression is the third leading cause among adolescents. Globally, 10-20 per cent of children and adolescents experience mental disorders, while suicide is the leading cause of death among 15-29 year olds. Some of the most common adolescent disorders, apart from depression, include anxiety disorder, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, substance abuse and eating disorder.
Dr Gayatree Goswamee, Professor, Department of Education, Gauhati University, emphasised the need to do away with the social stigma associated with mental illnesses and highlighted the role of parents and teachers in moulding young minds to successfully cope with everyday challenges at home and school.
Highlighting potential steps that the State can undertake, Dr Nahid S Islam and Nimi Borgohain from GNRC Hospitals emphasised the need for urgent government intervention.
At Cotton University: The Department of Psychology of Cotton University, in collaboration with the North East Indian Association of Applied Psychology, organised a mental health awareness programme on the occasion of World Mental Health Day, stated a press release.
Registrar of the university, Prof DK Das, in his inaugural speech, emphasised the importance of sound psychological health of younger generation and various challenges faced by them at the present time.
Convenor of the programme and head of the Dept of Psychology, Dr Dimpy Mahanta, talked about various psychological issues faced by the adolescents and the young adults which can lead to mental illness. She also conducted a workshop on stress management and resilience building where school and college students took part.