More than three-quarters of young people believe that there is still a stigma attached to mental illness, and 25 per cent of 16-25 year-olds would not ask for help if they were suffering, it has been reported.

A survey by YouGov for the Prince’s Trust found that of the 2,225 young adults polled, a third believed that admitting to mental health problems could impact their chances of getting a job.

Professor Louise Areseneault, a mental health leadership fellow at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience, Kings College London, said that fear of stigma was a “major obstacle” to finding help.

“It is extremely worrying to see that young people suffer from the stigma around mental health. This can be a major obstacle for them in seeking help and finding support, which could further affect their confidence in finding work at a crucial stage in their lives,” said the professor.

“It shouldn’t be like this. Increasing the understanding and awareness of mental health problems among young people should be a key priority. We also need to explore ways of ensuring young people with mental health problems do not fall out of education or employment at an early age.”
Further to this, research found that a third of young people sampled worried about appearing weak if they did seek help. The majority of this proportion also said that they would not want to confide in anyone at all.

Over the past couple of months, these findings are the second instalment of anonymous research carried out online to represent a sample of young people from across the UK for the Prince’s Trust Macquarie Youth Index. In January the first instalment was published.



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