CDC: Mental Health Issues Rising in Teens, Especially Girls

    CDC: Mental Health Issues Rising in Teens, Especially Girls
    Last updated Feb 14, 2023
    Image credit: fox


    • A new report released by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Monday details increased levels of violence, sadness, and suicidal thoughts among teenagers, especially girls, over the past 10 years.[1]
    • According to the data, 57% of high school girls felt persistently sad or hopeless in 2021 — almost 60% more than in 2011. In addition, 30% of girls seriously considered attempting suicide, 18% experienced sexual violence in the past year, and 14% reported having been forced to have sex.[1]
    • The annual Youth Risk Behavior Survey, which polls US high school students on health and behaviors, provided the CDC with the data, which also showed 29% of boys reporting feeling persistently sad or hopeless — up from 21% in 2011.[2]
    • The report also found that 52% of LGBTQ+ youth experienced poor mental health, including 20% saying they had attempted suicide in the past year. 22% of LGBTQ+ youth also reported facing sexual violence.[3]
    • In terms of race, suicidal ideation was up among Black, Hispanic, and White students.[4]
    • Although the report presented troubling trends, several areas of teen health — including a decrease in risky sexual behavior and alcohol use — saw improvement over the past decade.[2]


    Narrative A

    This shocking report is the latest sign we have to ween our children off of social media. Teenage use of social media has increased toxicity and further isolated teens after the pandemic increased their loneliness. It’s up to parents, schools, and all adults to lessen, or at least better monitor, teenagers’ social media activity.

    Narrative B

    Social media can have a negative influence, but we shouldn’t let schools — which should have better mental health and sex education programs — off the hook. It’s also important to make sure teens are allowed to grow up while free from the control and expectations of overbearing adults.

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